A new sweet wet hulled processed coffee from the Sunda people of west Java and grown at around 1200 - 1500 masl. Wet hulled process, also known as semi washed is specific to Indonesia and comes out more like a natural process. This coffee is produced by the Klasika Beans cooperative, which has about 1000 members growing coffee on old Dutch East India plantations. This coffee is from a mill in the Puntang area, which is one of five washing stations in this co-op. It’s a blend of Catimor, Line S and Typica varieties and in the cup it’s very clean and sweet with notes of overripe berries and chocolate mousse.
Line S is not the sexiest variety name out there, or is it… It refers to a crange of varieties including - S795 and S288 originating in India. S795 is leaf rust resistant and locally known as Jember. S288 is the first generation of S26 and is a natural crossing of arabica and Liberica. If at this point you are begging for more information you can find it here.
In a country with 70 - 90% humidity all year round ‘drying’ coffee can be difficult. Giling Basah or Wet hulling is a technique adopted in Indonesia mainly for this reason, but also because the Dutch colonists wanted to get the return on their new found revenue stream as fast as possible. Still, a fast drying process is key to avoiding defects caused by bacteria and fungi growing in damp coffee!
The processing begins in a similar way to a washed process coffee. The cherry is de-pulped to remove the meat, it’s then fermented and washed to get the rest of the sticky mucilage off.
From there you have the coffee seed (bean) in it’s parchment shell and this is usually dried for a few weeks until the bean gets down to about 11% moisture level. It can then be rested for some months and when it’s ready for export it goes to the dry mill to have the parchment removed and be sorted and sacked. This is a noisy and dusty business as the parchment is dry and brittle.
In Indonesia however, things differ. The coffee in parchment is dried for 2-3 days to get humidity in the bean down to about 50% - 20% and then it is hulled straight away to remove the parchment. The coffee and parchment are both wet and soft so damage to the bean can happen easily and complete removal of the parchment is not always so successful. In this case though, a little more care is taken and boom, it's a lovely coffee!