When you hear the name Wilton Benitez you know you’re in for a crazy sensory coffee experience. This is our 3rd year with coffees from Wilton and his farm Granja Paraiso 92. This year Wilton has partnered with a UK based importer MiCafe to try and get more exposure to his amazing coffees. It seems to have worked and Wilton’s name is popping up all over the speciality scene in the UK and Europe.
We bought two lots from this years harvest.. this P-10 ‘double anaerobic, double thermal shock’ Gesha lot and another anaerobic Java lot, our favourites amongst many samples we cupped. This one is super sweet and floral with incredible aromatics and just the right amount of funk.
Wilton approaches his processing like a scientist. He has developed specific fermentation recipes for each of his coffees that vary in certain key metrics as well as the type of yeasts added to control fermentation flavour pathways. We met Wilton at World of Coffee and his energy and passion are infectious. His coffees are extraordinary.
Finca El Paraíso-92 is a family farm that produces different varieties such as Java, Bourbon Pink, Geisha, Pacamara, Caturra, Tabi, Castillo, Supremo and Colombia using highly innovative cultivation systems such as terraces, drip irrigation, shady and nutrition calculations in laboratory all aimed at producing a unique coffees. Finca Paraiso-92 also has its own microbiology laboratory, quality laboratory and processing plant. The processes applied to the different coffees start from a strict selection, sterilization and characterization of the cherry to later start with the first phase of controlled anaerobic fermentation, adding a specific microorganism for each process (Saccharomyces pastorianus in this instance), then the coffee is pulped and subjected to a second fermentation phase, when the second phase ends, a bean sealing process is carried out through impacts of hot and cold water (aka thermal shock) to improve the organoleptic conditions of the coffee.
Wilton believes there are three main factors that provide his coffee with a unique and exquisite taste: the fermentation process, the microorganisms used at each stage, and the method of soaking the beans in hot and then cold water to seal the grain.
For this particular lot Wilton explained the various steps of the process:
1. Manual harvest.
2. Characterisation of the cherry.
3. Classification of the cherry by density and size.
4. Sterilisation of the cherry (with UV and Ozone).
5. Immersion of the cherries in water at 90oC for 30 seconds.
6. Cherry pulping.
7. Fermentation begins in anaerobic bioreactors.
8. Sterilisation of the fruit with ozonated water.
9. During fermentation, addition of specific yeast (Saccharomyces pastorianus) to enhance fruity notes.
10. 6 hours after the start of the fermentation process, verification of PH and Brix of the mucilage (PH=6 & Brix=18).
11. Fermentation for 96 hours.
12. Verification of PH=3.8 and Brix=6.
13. Drying of the grain with controlled equipment at 38oC.
Wilton actually describes this P-10 recipe for this coffee as 'Double Anaerobic, double Thermal Shock'. Quite a mouthful.