Hyperion Coffee Co – Erick Bravo Finca El Chaferote

Roaster: Hyperion Coffee Co., Ypsilanti, MI

Origin: Huila, Colombia

Process: Washed/Special Prep

It’s not often that you see hops as a cupping note in coffee, and it’s even less frequent that you see a specific hop variety listed, but Hyperion boldly claims Mosaic Hops—one of my favorite varietals—as a tasting note on the label. Fans of craft beer will likely gravitate toward this bag as India Pale Ale lovers everywhere recognize Mosaic for its vibrant tropical fruit and dark berry notes, an attribute which captivates the palates of coffee drinkers and hop heads alike. As a bartender at a craft beer brewery by trade, knowing hops and being able to distinguish between them (and there’s a lot) is part of my job, and I have to wholly agree with their claims. 

As juicy and lush as it is flowery and sparkling, the Erick Bravo has an effervescent quality that makes it equally inviting cold as it is hot. When temperatures reached near 90°F in Southeast Michigan last week, this was excellent as a shaken iced coffee (read more here), which gives it an appearance and mouthfeel similar to a nitro beer, and really highlights the sweet berry notes.

I experimented with this coffee with several different brewing contraptions, filter styles, and a whole range of brewing temps, and found that it stands up to pretty much anything you throw at it, as long as your grinder is dialed in. I almost always find favor with Chemex, as it seems to highlight the acidity I look for while offering great clarity and depth, but the Hario V60 certainly helped some of the subtle floral notes (honeysuckle, lilac) to rise to the occasion. I didn’t get a chance to try it as espresso, but I plan on doing this soon.

So what makes this coffee unique? For one, this is 100% Pink Bourbon, a cultivar of Arabica coffee tree that is a hybrid of Red and Yellow Bourbon and is held in high regard for its consistent seed quality and depth of flavor. This variety is difficult to cultivate and therefore rare, making its quality all the more notable. This batch of Erick Bravo is a blend of two lots from the same harvest that had near-identical notes and scoring during cupping. However, each lot was processed separately, each one undergoing two independent fermentation times and methods before drying and blending, which results in coffee with incredible depth and character, yet also surprising clarity. 

Erick Bravo has become a regular fixture around my home, and I’m eager to see what other tricks this magic bean has up its sleeve.