10/18/2018 10:04:00 AM

Đà Lạt Arabica Bourbon Aroma

For two consecutive years having won the leading rank in the local coffee contest, the coffee garden of Le Thanh An family is not only acknowledged by coffee connoisseurs as the most delicious coffee garden but also a conservation area of the rare and precious coffee species for Da Lat.

Lying next to Hung Vuong Street, Dalat City, Lam Dong province, is the coffee garden of Le Thanh An’s family, with an old coffee tree of over 40 years. In the midst of the urbanization and tourism boom, when gardens have been replaced by a series of residential, hotel and resort projects, the presence of a coffee garden in the middle of the center of Da Lat is quite rare, causing lots of surprises for many people. However, when talking to the owner of the garden, we will understand the reason for its existence.

Sixty years ago, Mrs Le Thi Chinh’s family left Quang Nam and headed for Da Lat to set up a business. Here, Mrs Chinh worked for Mrs Tran Thi The’s family, a wealthy bourgeois with houses and land in Saigon, Dalat, Vung Tau. In Da Lat, besides the luxurious villa next to Le Thai To Street (now Hung Vuong Street), Mrs The also built a tile – roof house behind the villa for employees to live. After dozens of years working for the family, Mrs Chinh was given a house together with a garden larger than 8000m2 as wages. Later, Mrs The’s family settled down in foreign countries. The villa is managed by the state. The garden and the house are still owned by Mrs Chinh’s family.

While living in Dalat, Mrs Thể had opportunities to work abroad and carried back home a seedling of Arabia Bourbon coffee and propagated it throughout the garden. This is a fine-grained coffee bean, originating from Bourbon Island (nowadays Réonion) in the middle of Indian Ocean, the island where the anti-French kings of the Nguyen Dynasty, Duy Tan and Thanh Thai, were exiled.

Le Thanh An, Mrs Chinh’s son, said there are many different varieties of coffee in Vietnam. Particularly, Arabica Bourbon coffee is rated as the top world quality coffee due to its aroma, long lasting aftertaste, and low caffeine content. However, this is also very difficult to grow, only suitable for areas with cool weather all year round, without frost. "In terms of form, Arabica Bourbon has long and thin leaves, curly leaf edges, tops often hanging down to the ground, short distance between coffee beans, the fruit has a small knob. Compared with the common coffee varieties, Arabica Bourbon provides low productivity, only about 30%, "An said.
Previously, due to the quality of the coffee varieties are not paid attention to, many families in Da Lat chopped down the coffee trees to convert to farming crops or high-yield coffee varieties. However Le Thanh An’s family is determined to keep the garden, because apart from the delicious taste, the coffee garden is attached to their love and memories with the dear old owner. In 2011, a foreign coffee specialist and a director of a local coffee - producing company accidentally discovered the coffee garden of An’ s family. They asked him to cooperate by preserving the coffee garden and they would buy all of his family’s coffee at a high price. Then, in the two consecutive years 2015 and 2016, at the "Coffee quality contest of UCC Japan - UCC Europe in Vietnam", his family coffee products won the first prize. This helps the reputation of Arabica Bourbon coffee of his family to be spreading farther.

Le Thanh An said in his family coffee garden there are about 500 Arabica Bourbon coffee trees, each provides a crop of about 500kg per year. In the process of care, the family members almost do not use fertilizer, but they mainly use manure mixed with very small amounts of imported organic fertilizer. Generally, coffee growers will harvest coffee one-time by picking beans by buckets, the family members only pick each ripe bean, therefore, coffee harvesting lasts up to 2 months. The process of drying, roasting also complies with the sophisticated process. "If the coffee is dried it will lose its natural aroma, instead we get the smell of wood smoke. The best way is to expose coffee beans in the open with natural heat, coffee beans will dry slowly, keeping their natural aroma! "- An took this as an example.

Trong khi cà phê thông thường tại Đà Lạt chỉ có giá khoảng 60.000 đồng/kg thì cà phê Arabiaca Bourbon của gia đình anh An được bán với giá 350.000/kg, riêng cà phê đã rang xay là 500.000 đồng/kg. Hiện sản phẩm của gia đình anh được một số thương hiệu cà phê nổi tiếng trong nước bao tiêu và một phần đã được xuất sang Nhật Bản. “Tôi đang liên kết với một số hộ nhằm bảo tồn, mở rộng diện tích cà phê Arabia Buorbon nhằm góp phần khẳng định và nâng cao giá trị cho cà phê Đà Lạt”-Anh An chia sẻ.
While the price of ordinary coffee in Dalat is only about 60,000 VND / kg, his family Arabica Bourbon ground coffee is sold at 350,000 VND / kg, with roasted coffee 500,000 VND / kg. Currently, his family’s products are bought by well-known brand name companies in the domestic market and have been exported to Japan. "I am connecting with some households to conserve and expand the area of Arabica Bourbon coffee in order to contribute to affirm and enhance the value of Dalat coffee" - An shared his idea.




Address: 36 Trần Phú Street, Ward 4, Da Lat City, Lâm Đồng province
Tel: 02633 510 556  - Fax: 02633 811 656

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