CROWN JEWEL DECAF NICARAGUA FT-FLO/USA ORGANIC ROYAL SELECT SWISS WATER PROCESS CJO1559 – 32635-3 – SPOT RCWHSE

Price $177.00 per box

Box Weight 22 lbs

Position Spot

Boxes 48

Warehouses Oakland

Flavor Profile Plum, caramel, chocolate, full-bodied, clean

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This is a traditional washed coffee from cooperatives in Estelí, Madriz, and Nueva Segovia, Nicaragua. It is decaffeinated by Swiss Water process and it is certified Organic and Fairtrade. 

The flavor profile is bright and clean, with notes of rooibos tea, raspberry leaf, chamomile tea, cardamom, dates, and milk chocolate. 

Our roasters recommend a gentle approach, as you would take with many decaffeinated coffees. 

When brewed, the team recommends a fine grind, a flat bottom brewer, and a moderate dose. 

Taste Analysis by Isabella Vitaliano

When this coffee came through our cupping lab, we were so pleasantly surprised by this decaf, it had to become a Crown Jewel! What’s most impressive about this coffee is the minimal processing flavors. The inherent flavors of the Nicaraguan coffee plus the Swiss Water processing creates a highly cohesive and rich cup.

From rooibos tea, raspberry leaf, chamomile tea, cardamom, dates and milk chocolate there is a myriad of grounding, full-bodied flavors. Ideal for any single-origin decaf option on your menu, even delicious on pour-over!

Source Analysis by Mayra Orellana-Powell, Charlie Habegger, and Chris Kornman

Nicaragua has limited highland territory to support specialty production, but the natural resources it does have are formidable and provide the world with an impressive volume of delicate, citrusy profiles. For a majority smallholder coffee producing country with a concentrated growing region, it manages to export 2-3 million bags of coffee a year, more than double that of Costa Rica, its neighbor to the south, and almost as much as both Guatemala and Mexico.

Nicaragua’s agricultural history is deeply tied to its political one, which has included a number of land reforms and redistributions. Throughout the last hundred years the cooperative spirit has remained popular, sometimes benefitting from political movements, sometimes holding unfriendly politicians accountable. The remoteness of the coffee regions and the overall small farm size, has kept grower associations necessary, and the certification premiums and price minimums they offer are crucial to such an ecosystem.

This decaffeinated coffee is the product of two disparate but similarly aligned grower cooperatives: Cooperativa Multifuncional Family Coffee R.L. (COMULFAC) and Promotora de Desarrollo Cooperativo de Las Segovias (PRODECOOP), both longtime suppliers in Royal’s network of Fairtrade and Organic coffee producers.

Royal sourced this coffee prior to decaffeination directly through our Royal Select program, and coffees were chosen based on cup profile, physical preparation, and potential to express excellently once decaffeinated.

The lots were then shipped to Canada to undergo “Swiss Water Processing.” During the Swiss Water process, the green coffee is hydrated to expand the beans for caffeine extraction. The hydrated green coffee is then introduced to Green Coffee Extract (GCE), a unique solution of concentrated coffee solubles that allows the caffeine to leave the green coffee via osmosis while minimizing the loss of desired flavor compounds. Once the caffeine has been removed the green coffee is re-dried and re-bagged for transport, and the GCE is filtered of its caffeine through proprietary carbon filters and recycled to be used again.

Green Analysis by Isabella Vitaliano

The green on this coffee falls within typical expectations for decafs. Typically, decafs have elevated water levels due to processing, which involves rehydrating and dehydrating the coffee again. This is reflected in the slightly above-average water activity. With a slightly larger spread in the 17-20 range, a roaster can anticipate even roasting across the board. What is so great about this coffee is the processing. It is so minimal you have some flexibility in the roasting style. Check out the Ikawa analysis for more details!

Diedrich IR5 Analysis by Doris Garrido

Sampling decaffeinated coffee is always an enjoyable endeavor. We aim to ensure that coffee maintains its inherent flavors, which should not be overshadowed by the processing method. The Swiss Water Process achieves this delicately, allowing us to appreciate the coffee’s true taste.

I initiated the roasting process at 417°F with the airflow set at 50%. Anticipating a rapid temperature rise, I opted to delay any adjustments to the gas until after the turning point. As expected, the turning point occurred at 188°F, at which point I increased the gas to 85%, maintained it for three minutes, and then reduced it to 45%.

Observing color changes in decaffeinated coffee can be challenging. For this specific batch, I noticed the color transition sooner than expected and recorded the change at 288°F.

When the temperature reached 331°F, I reduced the gas to its minimum at 30% and maximized the airflow to 100%, gradually decreasing the rate of rise until the beans cracked at 380°F. The drying and yellowing stages took slightly over four minutes, so I allowed the coffee to develop for an additional minute and 43 seconds. This was done to maximize sweetness and dropped the beans at 389°F.

Taste-wise, this coffee offers a delightful cardamom flavor and mild acidity, complemented by the richness of dry fruits, dates, cinnamon, and milk chocolate. It’s a remarkably clear and clean decaffeinated coffee that provides a satisfying experience without overwhelming the palate

Ikawa Pro V3 Analysis by Isabella Vitaliano

Our current Ikawa practice compares two sample roast profiles, originally designed for different densities of green coffee. The two roasts differ slightly in total length, charge temperature, and time spent between color change in first crack. You can learn more about the profiles here.

We were delightfully surprised by this Nicaraguan decaf. With minimal processing flavors and a delicious roast profile, you have the ideal combination here.

On the high-density profile, you can expect notes of vanilla, classic chocolate notes, some complexity, and maybe a slightly flatter flavor profile.

The light-density roast has flavors like cacao nib and pomegranate, the body is full of a deliciously sweet aftertaste.

I recommend taking this on our light-density profile for that fuller and sweeter profile while still keeping the processing flavor to a minimum. Happy roasting!

You can roast your own by linking to our profiles in the Ikawa Pro app here:

Roast 1: Low Density Sample Roast

Roast 2: High Density Sample Roast

Brew Analysis by Joshua Wismans

In serendipity is when the inherent flavors of a coffee marry so well with the decaf processing, it tastes as though this coffee was always meant to be this way. That’s what’s going on here with this new Organic Swiss Water decaf Nicaragua. Our job brewing this coffee was to not get in its way and let it shine.

We started with a moderately fine grind, brewed on a Kalita Wave, with a 1:15.79 coffee-to-water ratio. To my surprise, we ended up with a 1.2 TDS, which is quite low. However, the brew was actually really nice, with notes of rooibos, orange, and milk chocolate.

Making sure to do my due diligence, I wanted to try the coffee with a more traditional TDS. I kept all the rest of the parameters the same and made the grind finer. While I still enjoyed the brew, a bit more tobacco came out in the profile, which while still good, wasn’t what I was looking for.

In Goldilocks fashion, the brew we preferred was right in the middle. Not too coarse, not too fine. Juuuuust right. However, the TDS was still low, coming in at 1.23. All the flavor was there though, with notes of creme brulee, basil, orange, and raspberry making one delicious decaf.

For this coffee we recommend a fine grind, a flat bottom brewer, and a moderate dose. Don’t worry about trying to get your TDS up. Just trust your palate.

Espresso Analysis by MJ Smith

Anyone who’s familiar with my past espresso analyses know that I LOVE having a new decaf to play around with, and this coffee from a few different lots in Nicaragua is no exception! Part of the reason I love decaf Crown Jewels on espresso so much is that they are such high-quality coffees and you never really know what to expect! While I wouldn’t say that they “taste like decaf,” there’s something very special and different about them. They tend to bring out tasting notes that you might not find in caffeinated coffee. Another reason I love decaf espresso so much is that you can have as much of it as you want without taking a trip to the moon! This coffee was very much in the realm of caramel apple with a hint of spice. Here are my notes on a few of my favorite shots…

First, as always, I started with a lower dose of 17.5 grams, and pulled a yield of 39.5g at 29 seconds. This was the first shot that I pulled today, and it was love at first sip! It had a wonderfully creamy body, and tasting notes of Werther’s caramels, applesauce, lemon balm, dolce de leche, and ginger. I’m not sure how this recipe would taste when paired with milk, but it carries itself very well on its own!

Next up, we have a dose of 19 grams, a yield of 36 grams and a time of 32 seconds. This shot was the winner for me today! It still had a nice creamy body, but it had a little more excitement to it. I picked up notes of candy apple, lemon sorbet, toffee, vanilla bean, honeysuckle, and cherry cola. While that first shot I discussed may have been better off as a straight shot, I think this shot (while incredible on its own) would pair wonderfully in a milk-based drink.

All in all, this is a very approachable decaf espresso that was a joy to dial in. It has a little something for everyone, whether you’re an espresso drinker or a latte lover! While I kept the pull times in an average range, it worked well with various doses and yields. I think this coffee would make a perfect addition to anyone’s espresso bar, and I hope you think so too! Enjoy!