Timor coffee has it's roots in colonial times with development of coffee plantations under Portuguese colonial control. The introduction of small scale farms happened later, and progresses after the independence of Timor Leste from Indonesia. This eastern Timor coffee comes from farms near the towns of Ainaro and Maubisse which sit in the shadow of mount Ramelau. This mountainous area offers good altitude, massive natural shade trees, and a relatively cool climate. This coffee is wet-processed in that it's fermented, but much like other parts of Indonesia, it is then collected in wet parchment and immediatley driven to a dry mill facility in Dili where it is laid out to dry on tarps. The final touch is sorting at a dry-milling facility. The result is a relatively clear Timor cup, albeit with some of the rustic fruit quality, and all the body you'd expect from the better wet-hulled Sumatras.
This lot from East Timor impressed us on the cupping table, a wet process coffee expressing a profile of articulated fruit notes, balanced sweet/bittersweet base, and relatively clean finish especially from the region. The dry grounds have a smell of cooked fruits, a lot like stewed plum, with a dense toasted sugar in the middle roast range. Adding hot water, there's a tropical dried banana note that comes up in the steam, sweet and dense, and the break is laden with caramel and spiced fruit smells. The cup echoes the tropical aspects, with both ripe and green banana notes, as well as a sort of mango/papaya puree flavor, and grape-like brightness. Edging toward FC roast develops cocoa flavors too, which round out the finish nicely, shifting from slightly rustic fruit to cocoa bittersweetness. It's not often that we see Timor coffee, period, so to taste a landed coffee this sweet and clean, we couldn't be happier.