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New Arrival | Baihu Mountain, Yunnan

 

YUNNAN DEBUT

It’s not often we get to add a new coffee-producing country to our offer list. Grown in the mountainous southwest region of Yunnan Province, which borders Myanmar and Tibet, this coffee has been years in the making for us. It’s also been one heck of a ride with China at the center of today’s global shipping crisis.

Crop to Cup has been active in China since 2011 and we have a solid team in place. In 2011 we began importing specialty coffee in China. A few years later, we launched the Arc Roaster equipment line with a team of partners (Arc 800 & Arc S Sample Roaster. They happen to also be active in small-scale farming in Yunnan. While most coffee we’ve imported into China has been custom for specific roasters (e.g. not to a spot list), in 2021 we launched a full trading office and lab in Shanghai. This was the beginning of Crop to Cup China—offering spot positions to roasters of all sizes.

It is only fitting that we expanded our China coffee activities back to the US, introducing roasters to coffee from one of China’s most beautiful and culturally rich provinces, Yunnan. Crop to Cup staff based in Shanghai travel regularly to Yunnan and several even operate their own tiny farms in Yunnan.

It’s through these long-standing connections in Yunnan that we source coffee from two cherry collectors: Mr. Yi and Mr. Zhang, who each collect from around 100 smallholder farmers growing mostly Catimor. Terraced farms dot Longling County’s steep slopes, including Baihu (White Tiger) Mountain.

The attention to consistency and quality separation at the mill is intense, leading to one of the cleaner cups you may find out of China.

China New Arrivals

Baihu Mountain Community

YUNNAN WASHED B | Raisin, peanut, tea tree, lemon | 82

A Note from the QC Lab:

You will notice that the score is on the lower side of what we usually bring in. Over the last 8 years in my capacity as a cupper & Q grader, I have been afforded the opportunity to taste a lot of coffees from Asia, mostly from producers looking to level up into the specialty market in Laos, China & Thailand. In the past, many of these samples had vegetal notes and at times what I called a “stainless steel” finish, which was really my way of conveying a metallic/mineral finish. In the past few years, however, I have seen a notable shift to better qualities, and I was very excited when we started putting our Crop to Cup roots down in China. This year we received offer samples from our partners in Yunnan that had both a pleasant cup profile and were devoid of a rough vegetal finish. While there is some citric acidity, this is really a mild cup profile and very balanced hot to cold (something I prize). It’s a pleasant and sweet cup of coffee that we knew would be a great first step for many people’s first cup of coffee from China.

Good coffee comes from good people. We’d love to tell you more about each of these producers and their coffees. Get in touch to learn more.

Happy Roasting,

The Crop to Cup Team