Fazenda Inglaterra is a farm we've been buying from for over ten years, and it's one that I am very proud to be working with and linked with. The owner is my very good friend, Stephen Hurst.
To tell the story of Inglaterra, I'll hand this over to Stephen of the Hurst variety to tell you how he came to own 'Inglaterra':
“Maybe it had always been an idea in the back of my mind – so a couple of years ago when some friends in Brazil mentioned that a small coffee farm was for sale, I had a look.
The farm's name (Fazenda Toca Da Onca) means 'hiding place of a small wildcat'. The locals now call the farm 'Inglaterra'. The previous owners had abandoned Toca Da Onca/Inglaterra. So we had to start again, almost from scratch. Some surviving coffee trees were pruned right back and the coffee that you are now drinking is that re-growth from the original old trees.
For the coffee people, the varietals are Icatu, Acaia and Catucai. In future I expect coffee cherry varietals to become as well known as wine grape varietals, and to a much wider audience. The farm is located near the lovely spa town of Poços De Caldas in the coffee-growing heartlands of Brazil’s Minas Gerais state. The farm's elevation is 950–1300 metres, and it has rich soil. It's on the edge of an ancient caldera/super volcano, whose outline can be seen on satellite images. 50% of the farm is virgin Mata Atlantica forest and as long as I own it, it will stay that way. I am replanting some areas with the help of my local friends Gabriel and Cristiano, without whose assistance this project would never have started."
Back to Stephen of the Leighton variety!
After Stephen bought the farm there was one varietal he decided to add to the plant stock that wasn't already there, and that varietal was Canario. It's one of those varietals you would never plant if you had to survive on coffee for your living – pests love it, its yield is really low and the slightest change in temperature will result in frost burn; a point proved a few years back when a cold snap experienced in Poços de Caldas left over 25% of this crop damaged.
So why grow it then? Well, it produces some of the most delicious coffee you can imagine. Also, it's something that Stephen had always wanted to ask producers to try but was too afraid to ask, so he just went ahead and did it himself!
In the cup this is dried apricot mashed up with delicate peach. There's a malty sweetness in there too, which ends on a buttery finish and just a little nudge of hazelnut.
- Country: Brazil
- Region: Minas Gerais
- City: Poços de Caldas
- Farm: Fazenda Inglaterra
- Owner: Stephen Hurst
- Farm size: 10 hectares
- Coffee growing area: 5 hectares
- Altitude: 1,200 m.a.s.l.
- Varietal: Canario
- Processing system: Natural
Dried apricot, peach, malty, buttery, hazelnut.
Clean cup: (1–8): 7
Sweetness: (1–8): 7
Acidity: (1–8): 6
Mouthfeel: (1–8): 7
Flavour: (1–8): 6
Aftertaste: (1–8): 6
Balance: (1–8): 6
Overall: (1–8): 7
Total (max. 100): 88
Medium/medium dark – nice and steady through the crack and extend the development time, but drop before second gets going.