The brigadistas came to Nicaragua from Europe in the late 70s, early 80s. Most were students, some artists. They came for political reasons. The brigadistas were mostly students and poets. They listened to the Clash and fell on the zealous side of the left-leaning spectrum. Picking coffee was an afterthought, a show of solidarity with the people.
Then the brigadistas “discovered” coffee. Not the charred black stuff they recognized, the stuff in a tin can on a London supermarket shelf. The brigadistas developed a real taste for the acidic, fruity, juicy flavors of tropical Nicaraguan beans. Coffee that poured bright red into the cup. Sweet and bright with cherry, green grape, and maple notes.
The brigadistas learned respect for the fruit that they pulled from the branches.
The political moment passed. The students and artists flew home with Nicaraguan beans in their suitcases. They were to be specialty coffee ambassadors in London, Dublin, and Berlin. They didn’t taste “regular” coffee the same way. They began to search for something better at home. Some went as far as to import Nicaraguan beans themselves, investing in them primarily as commodity. But they drank it themselves, too. For pleasure.
We love this Nicaraguan coffee for the same reason: the unexpected floral aroma, the brightness in the swig that flashes your taste buds. It’s something to put in your suitcase no matter where you roam.
Producer: PRODECOOP; [pro də koʊap]
Taste Notes: Sweet and bright with cherry, green grape, and maple notes
Region: Estelí, Nicaragua
Altitude: 1,500-1,700 MASL