At Café Granja La Esperanza, one of the most cutting-edge coffee producers in Colombia, Blue Bottle Coffee green buyer (and Sprudgie award-winner) Stephen Vick Instagrammed these dried coffee blossoms, suitable for brewing and drinking what he describes as “next level tea”. Well, actually? It's a tisane. But still.
The blossoms–described by Vick as “the dank ish”–have been dried and separated into lots coming from Granja La Esperanza's many planted coffee varieties: Geisha, Red Bourbon, Red Bourbon Tekisic, Yellow Bourbon, Laurina, Pacamara, and Sudan Rume.
This makes us so happy.
Coffee trees blossom shortly before bearing fruit, flooding fields with the intoxicating scent of jasmine. When dried, these flowers make a beautifully complex and flavorful tisane that captures many of the delicate aromatics of the coffee plant. It's simply delicious, and the idea of getting to try a tisane made with some of the exotic varieties at Granja La Esperanza makes us so jealous.
The wonders of the coffee flower tisane are starting to leak out. Alejandro Mendez centered his 2011 World Barista Championship-winning routine around capturing the wide spectrum of coffee flavors with a coffee flower tisane, a coffee cherry tisane, and espresso for his signature drink. Ninety Plus have been teasing availability of their gesha flower offering for awhile now. We recently had the chance to try a sample of some coffee flower tisane ourselves courtesy of Lee Ayu of Ahka Ama Coffee, at a cupping presented by Stumptown Coffee Roasters in Portland. Mr. Ayu is an absolutely fascinating dude–look for an in-depth interview with him soon on Sprudge–and his project centers on high-quality coffee production outside of Chiang Mai, Thailand. The coffee blossom tisanes we tried were wok-roasted by Lee Ayu's mother in Thailand very quickly over high heat, for a caramelized flavor profile that reminded us of hojicha tea.
Barista champions, progressive farmers, some guy's mom with a dialed in wok: that all sounds great, but when will the everyman be able to buy some roasted coffee flowers? The mind boggles at the delicious cocktail possibilities and summer drink concoctions. Someone needs to put this stuff on sale to the wider public, and soon.