China Premium Yunnan – Torch Coffee – Lao Xu Zhai – Catimor Natural Processed

(3 customer reviews)

Out Of Stock – The Anerobic Natural version is trucking in as we speak! ETA 07/08/24
This is one exotic coffee even for natural fans. The linkage in taste to red wine (lighter roasting) or rum (darker roasting) is pretty wild. We have had “winy” coffees before, but not like this. Best served at the light to medium roast level, but quite interesting darker roasted as well. Lighter roasting accentuated the red wine like attributes, hints of citric with a very fruity edge: sweet, oaky, nutty, a little boozy in the finish. Although I know I was not drinking red wine, it really comes close to tricking the tongue. Medium roasts tame the cup a bit, still plenty winy and fruity but presents a smoother, less wilder version of the lighter roast points. Spice notes clearly pop out in the medium roast level starting to give some spiced rum like tastes in the background. Darker roasts really bring forth the sweet rum like spice notes balanced with a molasses like darker tone and a fuller body.

$9.49

Out of stock

$9.49/lb

1 lb

$9.14/lb

2

$8.99/lb

5

$8.64/lb

20

$8.29/lb

60+ lbs

Description

Been a long time since we found some awesome Chinese coffees. Here in the USA, its easy to think of tea from China but few have had their coffee. On the rare side even though they have been growing it for 100+ years! Mostly purchased by domestic and closer markets, with only a recent emphasis on specialty offerings. An origin you should not overlook on your drinking journey around the globe & through your roaster.

We recently befriended Torch Coffee Labs, who is about as connected to Chinese coffee as you can get. They run education and coffee certification labs throughout Asia and have recently begun putting together specialty regional chops in China which we are proud to slap on our list. Some very tasty and unique coffees, this Lao Xu Zhai Natural is a wild and super different coffee, natural fans only on this one. Strong fermentation and fruity factor. Very reminiscent of wine and/or rum with underlying coffee tones.

Tasting Notes: This is one exotic coffee even for natural fans. The linkage in taste to red wine (lighter roasting) or rum (darker roasting) is pretty wild. We have had “winy” coffees before, but not like this. Best served at the light to medium roast level, but quite interesting darker roasted as well. Lighter roasting accentuated the red wine like attributes, hints of citric with a very fruity edge: sweet, oaky, nutty, a little boozy in the finish. Although I know I was not drinking red wine, it really comes close to tricking the tongue. Medium roasts tame the cup a bit, still plenty winy and fruity but presents a smoother, less wilder version of the lighter roast points. Spice notes clearly pop out in the medium roast level starting to give some spiced rum like tastes in the background. Darker roasts really bring forth the sweet rum like spice notes balanced with a molasses like darker tone and a fuller body.

Roasting Notes: An easier to roast coffee even though it has high chaff levels. Beautiful prep for a ferment natural and very even roasting. Usually with naturals this fruity/wild they roast super uneven, making roasting a bit difficult, but not the case here. One can tell the care that went into this lot just by their excellent screening process. A longer setup will smooth out the cup increase the depth of flavor, but mute up some of the strong winy factor. A fun one to start drinking 12 hours after roasting, but save some for 3-7 days to see the difference.

Lao Xu Zhai Village (lao shoo jai) has partnered with Torch for over ten years, generously sharing their land and livelihood to collaborate at every step of the production chain. A new processing station, nursery, and shared experiments in plant nutrition, harvesting, processing, and even roasting have given rise to rapid gains in consistency, quality and farmer sustainability.

Lao Xu Zhai, traditionally known for producing commercial-grade coffee, is making significant strides in elevating their coffee quality. In collaboration with a local specialty coffee company, the village has been learning advanced techniques to enhance their picking and processing methods. This season marks their debut into the specialty coffee market, showcasing their dedication to producing superior coffee. The transition involves meticulous attention to detail, from selective hand-picking of ripe cherries to implementing refined processing techniques that highlight the beans’ unique characteristics. As the villagers adopt these practices, they are not only improving the quality of their coffee but also gaining valuable skills and knowledge that empower the community. The hard-working community of Lao Xu Zhai is committed to building a reputation for delicious and memorable coffee, aiming to make a notable impact in the specialty coffee industry. Their efforts are paving the way for sustainable development and economic growth, positioning Lao Xu Zhai as a rising star in the world of specialty coffee.

Origin: Lao Xu Zhai Village, Yunnan, China
Elevation: 1263 meters
Processing: Natural
Varietal: Catimor
Elevation | 1263 meters

Additional information

Weight 1.01 lbs
Arrival Date:

06/10/24

Lot #:

0003

Origin:

Yunnan

Processing Method:

Natural

3 reviews for China Premium Yunnan – Torch Coffee – Lao Xu Zhai – Catimor Natural Processed

  1. Rowan Quinn (verified owner)

    Oh wow – this is truly awful. Not the quality of the beans, they truly are high-quality as any bean with the Burman name on it is! It roasts very evenly, just as described. I roasted it to medium, and wow…it goes far beyond winey, to my palate anyway. The best part is the finish, not just because the sip finally ends but it actually has a nice dark chocolate aftertaste. Otherwise, if you absolutely hate the taste of coffee, this is the bean for you!

    • Jon Burman

      Very sorry you did not like that one!

      Believe it or not, it really is a shining example of a fermented natural processed coffee. For sure pretty wild and will not taste like normal coffee by any means. We try to describe this coffees unique features, but nothing can ready the tongue for strong fermentation tones if not ready and willing for them.

      Fermented naturals are a love/hate with the customer base. Do be warned, we stock a couple other over the top ones like the Papua New Guinea Sigri Naturals, Brazil Bahia Tropical Natural. Might keep an eye out and avoid the ones described as fruity naturals or you can risk similar tastes in other beans.

      Thanks!

  2. SPARTY047 (verified owner)

    I am a traditionalist when it comes to coffee. Give me a Sumatran Lintong or other blue bean in a medium or darker roast; a Indian Mysore or Monsooned Malabar; or a Yirgacheffee or African and I am happily drinking “coffee.”

    I was intrigued by Jon’s description of fruity natural and bought 5# of this coffee to trial. I roasted the first pound of it in my Gene Cafe for 6min at 300F, ~6 min at 465, then down to 425 until 30 sec into first crack – what I would consider a medium roast. Wow! This is not your Father’s coffee! In fact, it did not even taste like “coffee” to me. The red wine description comes very close to describing it. Hot red wine – mulled red wine. It took 4 or 5 espresso lungos and coffee americanos from my Gaggia Babila before I began accepting this for what it is – an “exotic coffee.”

    I drank it just now, at 1pm, when I broke my fast with a cheese and roasted veggie omelet and fresh fruit . It complimented the meal nicely. It tasted just fine! But it sure as hell is not coffee in the traditional sense. Don’t expect it. I’ve got 4# left, and will roast the next batch a bit darker to check that flavor profile; but doubt it will taste anything like a traditional coffee profile.
    .
    I doubt I will re-order this bean, but have no regrets in trying it. As I said up front, I really enjoy very good coffee beans; but I guess my definition includes a flavor profile anchored in a basic “coffee” profile – not so far afield as to make one question whether it is tea or a fruit-based hot wine. I will heed Jon’s advice about strong fermentation tones.

  3. SPARTY047 (verified owner)

    Let me add that many folks will be positively enraptured by the unique flavor of this coffee.

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