We are proud to offer you the first-ever specialty grade Myanmar coffee to land in Cincinnati! If you enjoy pristinely clean natural processed coffees, we are confident you will enjoy this Myanmar. And, since Myanmar is a new and emerging specialty coffee origin, we will take a little extra time to give you some of the backstory so you understand why this coffee is so significant.
Even though coffee was first introduced into Myanmar in 1885, the coffee trade since then has more or less inched along, with the bulk of coffee grown there making its way across borders to China, Laos and Thailand via “unofficial” transactions. Now, after more than six decades of self-imposed isolation by successive military governments, Myanmar has emerged with a reinvigorated entrepreneurial vision. This new enthusiasm for commerce is evident in the emerging coffee industry guided by experts intent on expanding the global supply of quality beans.
In 2014, the Myanmar Coffee Project was created to help educate producers about international markets. Since then, entities like Atlas Coffee Importers and Coffee Quality Institute have been working with growers to improve agronomy and harvesting practices. In just three years, coffees in this country have gone from scoring in the low 70s to the mid to high 80s as investments in milling and education have brought about the birth of a true specialty coffee business in Myanmar.
Last year, Atlas Coffee Importers brought the first container of specialty grade Myanmar coffee to America. The response was overwhelming, with roasters being blown away by the quality of the coffee. And this year has shown that Myanmar’s successful step onto the world coffee stage was no fluke.
Craig Holt, owner of Atlas, explains:
"Buoyed by last year’s success, the growers have upped their game yet again, and have produced coffees that deserve a place in every great specialty line up. What is particularly striking is the cleanliness and consistency of the natural coffees produced here. They are unique in their combination of citrus and berry acidity, and in many cases offer the best of what natural process and washed process coffees have to offer. Best of all, we have had a tremendous experience working with the communities and all the players in the Myanmar coffee supply chain. Great people producing excellent coffee. This is what specialty coffee is all about!"
A Lel Chaung
A Lel Chaung is a community of 280 Danu households, with 150 of them producing coffee. They mainly grow catuai varietal on 250 total acres of land at an average elevation of 1282 masl. Their coffee performed very well in the cupping this year, bright and juicy with notes of red grape and cranberry. In one year they have more than doubled their production as well as made improvements in the community. They’ve put in many more drying beds, and the cherry that Craig saw on the tables was "stunningly perfect in its ripeness."
In the Cup
This coffee is very clean, with a surprising and pleasing brightness for a natural processed coffee. It has the flavor character you'd expect from a natural, but drinks more like a washed coffee. The mouthfeel is silky and there is a nice viscosity to the body. Notes of Strawberry, Lime and Rose.