At the end of 2017, Kim Westerman of CoffeeReview.com published an excellent report of the state of Nicaraguan coffees, comparing a few of the Nicaraguans that she’d had the opportunity to cup and score, including our Songbird Nicaraguan.
That article was recently published in the latest edition of Roast Magazine, and we’ve included the final paragraph from that review here on our blog.
From Roast Magazine and CoffeeReview.com:
“Perhaps the only coffee presenting a classic Nicaragua profile among the nine highest scorers is Thanksgiving Coffee’s Organic Shade-Grown Nicaragua (reviewed online at 92), a blend of the respected maracaturra, caturra and catuai varieties, meticulously processed by the traditional wet method. It is also the only coffee we reviewed that is certified Bird Friendly by the Smithsonian Institution, hands-down the most uncompromising and rigorous of environmentally focused certifications. The idealism and passion that drove the growing and farm management that produced this coffee clearly went into its processing as well: It is an impressively pure coffee. Of all nine coffees we reviewed this month, it most clearly represents the classic Nicaragua cup of tradition, with its inherent balance, quietly juicy acidity and buoyant, satiny mouthfeel.”
We want to say thank you to Kim for writing this article and featuring the country of Nicaragua as an origin. We also want to thank Roast Magazine for publishing it in their most recent magazine. You can find this entire article on pages 78 and 79 of the March/April edition of Roast Magazine, and online at CoffeeReview.com.
Our Songbird Nicaraguan is a Medium Roast that is part of our partnership with the American Birding Association. You can find this coffee at a number of supermarkets and Wild Birds Unlimited outlets across the United States (see our Store Locator), as well as online on the Thanksgiving Coffee store.
If you appreciate a good cup of coffee, chances are that you’ve landed on the website CoffeeReview at one time or another. Founded by Kenneth Davis in 1997, CoffeeReview is the leading review website in the coffee industry. We regularly submit coffees for review to Ken and his team, and the latest results are in…
In 2015, Thanksgiving Coffee became a B Corporation, joining a global community of socially and environmentally progressive businesses.
What’s a B Corp?
B Corps are leading a global movement of people using business as force for good. They use the power of business to solve social and environmental problems. B Corps are for-profit companies certified by the nonprofit B Lab to meet rigorous standards of social and environmental performance, accountability, and transparency.
Today, there is a growing community of more than 1,550 B Corporations 42 Countries 130 Industries 1 Unifying Goal: to redefine success in business.
Why did we become a B Corp?
Thanksgiving Coffee has been a longtime advocate of sustainable business practices. We pride ourselves on our long standing work with farmers at origin, investing in social justice and environmental projects, Fair Trade and Organic and biodynamic coffee growing methods. We constantly evaluate our decisions based on their social and environmental impact. B Corp certification seemed like a logical step for us, to join others who operate under these same principles .
We first looked into B Corp Certification because we felt the community reflected our company values, and because we wanted to formalize our membership in the socially and environmentally progressive business community. It’s a simple way of expressing our values to our staff, customers, partners and suppliers. We’re proud to be a part of this movement.
B Corp is to business what Fair Trade certification or USDA Organic certification is to coffee. Inc Magazine calls B Corp “the highest standard in socially responsible business.”
To become certified, we underwent the B Impact Assessment. This is conducted by B Lab, a 501(c)3 nonprofit that serves a global movement, “People using Business as a Force for Good.” The assessment shows how a company performs against dozens of best practices on employee, community, and environmental impact.
Once our score was reached, we can then compare and learn how to improve the way we conduct our business for the future. This was a great opportunity to see how we stand and where to set our goals on where we want to be.
The second component to this is our company’s legal status, ensuring that we can justifiably incorporate social and environmental values into our business decisions without risking legal action from our shareholders. This is done by becoming a Benefit Corporation and changing the articles of incorporation.
Finally, we made it official by signing the B Corp Declaration of Interdependence:
We envision a global economy that uses business as a force for good.
This economy is comprised of a new type of corporation – the B Corporation – Which is purpose-driven and creates benefit for all stakeholders, not just shareholders.
As B Corporations and leaders of this emerging economy, we believe:
– That we must be the change we seek in the world.
– That all business ought to be conducted as if people & place mattered.
– That, through their products, practices, and profits, businesses should aspire to do no harm & benefit all.
– To do so requires that we act with the understanding that we are each dependent upon another & thus responsible for each other & future generations.
We won’t stop here. We’ll continue to make strides to improve scores where they’re less than the median, and maintain our practices that are already high. After 2 years, we’ll need to re-certify and prove that we’re still worthy of B Corp status.
Blind Assessment: Delicately bright, exhilarating. Candied lemon, vanilla, pear, baker’s chocolate in aroma and cup. Gentle, lively acidity; light, satiny mouthfeel. Lemon and crisp chocolate carry into a sweet, lightly flavor-saturated finish.
Notes: This coffee is certified organically grown and Fair Trade Certified, meaning it was purchased from small-holding farmers at a “fair” or economically sustainable price. This coffee was produced by farmers in the Worka Cooperative, currently representing 305 members. Southern Ethiopia coffees like this one are produced from traditional Ethiopian varieties of Arabica long grown in the region. It was processed by the wet or washed method (fruit skin and pulp are removed before drying). Ethiopia coffees processed with this method typically express great aromatic complexity and intensity, with a particular emphasis on floral notes.
Who Should Drink It: Those who value gently bright coffees, delicate, aromatic, pure.
Blind Assessment: Richly fruity and cidery. Baker’s chocolate, apple cider, wisteria-like flowers, a brightening hint of grapefruit in aroma and cup. Resonant, roundly tart acidity; lightly syrupy mouthfeel.
Notes: This coffee is certified organically grown and Fair Trade Certified, meaning it was purchased from small-holding farmers at a “fair” or economically sustainable price. It was produced by the Banko Gotitit Cooperative, established in 2012 and currently representing 300 members. Southern Ethiopia coffees like this one are produced from traditional Ethiopian varieties of Arabica long grown in the region. This is a “natural” or dry-processed version, meaning the beans were dried inside the fruit, encouraging a flavor profile that is less predictable and deeper than the more familiar wet-processed floral- and citrus-toned southern Ethiopia profile.
Who Should Drink It: Those who enjoy the subtle, complexly sweet ferment and lush flowers of the more rustic style of dried-in-the-fruit or “natural” coffees.
Blind Assessment: Richly cocoa-toned, crisp and balanced. Cocoaish dark chocolate, blood orange, fig, musky lily in aroma and cup. Crisp, gentle acidity; light, silky mouthfeel. The cocoa-like chocolate rings on in a quietly resonant finish.
Notes: This coffee is certified organically grown and Fair Trade certified, meaning it was purchased from small-holding farmers at a “fair” or economically sustainable price. It was produced by the ASOCAFE cooperative, established in 1990 and comprising roughly three-hundred farmers.
Who Should Drink It: This quietly complex, crisply chocolate-toned cup should please those who prefer the subtle and silky to the bright and assertive in a Fair Trade- and organic-certified coffee.
Blind Assessment: Immaculately sweet; lyrical. Peach, honey, lavender and honeysuckle, fresh-cut cedar in aroma and cup. Sweet, high-toned acidity; lightly syrupy mouthfeel. Peach, honey and flowers carry into a crisply sweet finish.
Notes: Rwanda’s tremendous potential as fine coffee producer has only come to fruition over the past several years owing to generous support from international aid agencies, the specialty coffee community and the industry of its growers. Made up entirely of the admired Red Bourbon cultivar and certified fair-trade, this lot comes from the Dukunde Kawa Cooperative; this collection of farmers in known as Musasa, after the areas major town. In 2012 Thanksgiving won the SCAA’s Sustainability Award for work they’ve done with this cooperative since 2004. One of the country’s pioneering socially and environmentally progressive roasters, Thanksgiving aimed to combine coffee quality with social and environmental responsibility many years before the latter preoccupations became fashionable. Visit www.thanksgivingcoffee.com or call 800-648-6491 for more information.
Who Should Drink It: Those who enjoy a profound natural sweetness in a Fair-Trade-certified coffee. Sweeter and more delicate than a typical good Rwanda.
Blind Assessment: Sweet-toned, gentle, juicy. Pineapple, sweet chocolate, rum, minty flowers, fresh-cut cedar in aroma and cup. Round, richly lively acidity; full, very syrupy mouthfeel. Flavor consolidates in a finish that balances continuing sweetness with a crisp drying edge.
Notes: This exceptional coffee was selected as the #13 coffee on Coffee Review’s list of the Top 30 Coffees of 2014. Certified organically grown from trees of the Maracaturra variety, a hybrid developed by Byron Corrales, the innovating Nicaraguan farmer who also produced this coffee. Maracaturra is a cross between the workhorse local dwarf variety Caturra (itself a mutant of the heirloom Bourbon) and the rare, huge-beaned Maragogipe, making it a parallel variety to the better-known Pacamara, a cross between Maragogipe and Pacas (also a mutant selection of Bourbon). A fine example of a “natural” or dry-processed coffee, meaning the beans were dried inside the fruit, encouraging a flavor profile that is sweeter and deeper-toned than the more familiar wet-processed coffees of Central America. One of the country’s pioneering socially and environmentally progressive roasters, Thanksgiving aimed to combine coffee quality with social and environmental responsibility many years before the latter preoccupations became fashionable. Visit www.thanksgivingcoffee.com or call 800-648-6491 for more information.
Who Should Drink It: Aficionados may enjoy sampling an unusual variety and its enormous beans, but everyone with a refined coffee sweet tooth should enjoy the natural sweetness and tropical fruit (and drink) suggestions proposed by aroma and flavor.
Blind Assessment: Deep, intense but balanced. Peach, sweet chocolate, plum blossom, ripe orange in aroma and cup. Delicate, lyrically lively acidity; silky mouthfeel. Peach and chocolate in particular carry into a resonantly flavor-saturated finish.
Notes: From one of the few certified organic farms in the Kona growing region, Mahina Mele, or “Moonsong Farm” in Hawaiian. One of the country’s pioneering socially and environmentally progressive roasters, Thanksgiving aimed to combine coffee quality with social and environmental responsibility many years before the latter preoccupations became fashionable.
Who Should Drink It: A splendid organically grown Kona that manages to be deep yet delicate, and utterly pure in its peach and floral nuance.