Varietal Deep Dive: Laurina and Aramosa
Laurina and Aramosa are naturally low-caffeine varietals.
Laurina, also known as Bourbon Pointu, is a small and pointy bean derived from the Bourbon family.
Originating from the Reunion Islands in the Indian Ocean, this varietal was first discovered in 1800 but was thought to have been wiped out as its lastrecorded shipment was in 1942.
In 1999, José Yoshiaki Kawashima, a “coffee hunter”, found Bourbon Pointu on Reunion Island.
Kawashima studied at the National Coffee Research Institute in El Salvador where he learned how to cultivate coffee. Working with UCC Ueshima Coffee Co., Ltd., Kawashima has assisted in developing coffee farms in Jamaica, Hawaii, and Indonesia. He focuses on finding rare species and works for their conservation and cultivation.
Aramosa is a hybrid between a Coffea Arabica and Coffea Racemosa (a species of flowering plant from the Rubiaceae family). The genetics of Aramosa are still being studied by Daterra and IAC, the Agronomic Institute of Campinas. The idea behind this crossbreed was to create a varietal that inherited valuable aspects from each species of plant. The Racemosa species imparted its low caffeine content and drought resistance, while the Arabica imparted its flavour.
Because the coffee never went through a decaffeination process which can often either removes flavour or imparts flavour to the coffee, this coffee remains light and floral, something Lynsey Hayes, the owner of Sorellina Coffee explains is rare to find in low-caffeine coffee.
“The thing I find most interesting about this coffee when it comes to flavour profile is that it has a lot of minerality to it that you often find in white wine. In wine, we call it wet stone. It’s an aroma and a flavour that you pick up that has a strong mineral quality to it. A lot of people with wine backgrounds like to use this minerality note to describe coffees but I really have not experienced it myself until I tried this one.”.