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Archival Release #38

DR Congo
Wet Process

A number of the most important coffee-producing nations in Africa are found in a geographical zone that is commonly referred to as the ‘Great Lakes Region’. As its name suggests, this region encompasses coffee growing countries that are located in close proximity to the great lakes of East Africa, including Lake Victoria, Lake Tanganyika, and Lake Kivu. While Passenger has historically focused its buying from this region on coffees from Rwanda and Burundi, it is undeniably true that the Democratic Republic of Congo is one of a number of other countries in this region that are capable of producing exceptional coffees.

The specific lot selected by Passenger’s green buying team in 2022 was titled “Mapendo 1800”, denoting that the lot separation consisted of cherries grown at 1800 masl or above. With growing elevations for Mapendo ranging from 1450 - 1800 masl, the lively acidity and deep sweetness of this separation is almost certainly traceable to higher elevation cherry selection (slower cherry maturation at higher altitudes tends to yield added complexity and sweetness to the cup).

Exhibiting many of the hallmarks of a classic ‘Great Lakes’ profile, expect lime and dark cherry on the nose of this coffee, followed by sweet plum and caramel flavors that are pleasantly balanced by a cocoa and black tea finish.

The Freezer Friday archival release series provides a unique new opportunity to explore Passenger’s treasure trove of notable harvests from the past.

Freezing Coffee: Why We Do It And What It Involves
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As those familiar with our approach to green coffee preservation will already know, we have actively stored our green coffee in an off-site deep freeze facility since our start as a company, keeping the coffees that we purchase in pristine condition following arrival.

While the majority of Reserve Lot coffees that we buy sell out within months of their first appearance on our menu, we have, since our start in 2014, saved small volumes of many of our most extraordinary coffees for future enjoyment.

Through our Freezer Friday release series, we make some of our “greatest hits” available for purchase in extremely limited quantities. Each release is announced through Social Media and limited to 1 per order.

The archival lots that we release in this way are not only shining examples of plant genetics, terroir, and skilled processing, they also offer a unique nostalgic opportunity: to revisit our previous experiences with these coffees and acknowledge once again some of the true high-water marks of producers whose coffees we have been privileged to taste over the years.