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Gunships and Coffee: Tracking a Popular BRCC Roast to the Hills of Colombia

Picture this. You are sitting at home about to enjoy your first cup of a new Black Rifle Coffee Company roast, when it hits you; where exactly does BRCC find all these delicious coffees? Now, we know that not all BRCC subscription holders purchase new coffees based on the cool bag designs or because they come with new stickers. Many coffee club members enjoy taking the extra time to focus their attention on a coffee's place of origin, which often adds to the experience.

This same sort of fixation led us on a 3,291-mile journey to Colombia. The coffee for this epic adventure was none other than Black Rifle Coffee Company's Gunship Roast. Like its namesake, Gunship has always soared in its role as a light roast that compliments many of the heavy hitters in the BRCC lineup.

Gunship features an ultra-smooth finish with floral aromas and light caramel tasting notes. A new bag design displays an early-to-rise painting of a Little Bird helicopter inserting a payload of military operators. 


Fina Del Cafe
Photo credit: Kelly Getzelman/BRCC Blog.

 

According to the roasting team in Manchester, Tennessee, 10 of BRCC’s current coffee offerings are 100% Colombia Excelso Arabica. These include some of our most popular roasts, such as the Silencer Smooth, Gunship, Just Black, and Freedom roasts.

We quickly put in an order for some Silencer Smooth, Just Black, Gunship, and Beyond Black, and we started planning our trip.

Finca del Cafe Coffee Farm and Inn


Three of the Colombia Coffee Triangle’s biggest cities are Pereira, Armenia, and Manizales. We decided to focus our attention on Pereira, which is in the center of the coffee region and is close to the famous coffee farm Finca del Cafe. This coffee farm specializes in providing its guests with an authentic seed-to-cup experience. 

We arrived a little after 7 p.m. local time and were immediately greeted by our host. She informed us that our coffee origins tour would begin at 9 a.m. sharp the following morning, giving us plenty of time to relax and explore the property.


Finca Del Cafe
Photo credit: Kelly Getzelman/BRCC Blog. 

 

The eight-room hotel is located directly on the coffee farm and features three common areas and an interior courtyard. An outdoor covered space featured an infinity pool with amazing views of the landscape's majestic mountain scenery. This was where we set our sights on enjoying our BRCC roast.

Our coffee farm tour was a guided experience that allowed us to witness firsthand the sustainable coffee farming process, from seed to tasting, through carefully prepared stations and trails along the Colombian landscape.

We were outfitted with hats, ponchos, and baskets — all typical coffee culture accessories. Our first stop was at the seedbed, where we learned how the coffee seeds mature to become young plants ready to be planted in the Finca del Cafe coffee fields.

 

Finca Del Cafe
Photo credit: Kelly Getzelman/BRCC Blog.

 

Next, we entered an innovative, parabolic solar coffee-bean dryer. Our guide walked us through the different coffee drying processes, which they explained were crucial for developing a bean's unique characteristics and tasting notes.

From there, we hit multiple walking trails throughout the farm. We used our traditional baskets to pick the ripe, red coffee cherries directly from the fields along the route. Over the 45-minute trek, we were surrounded by bamboo forests, tropical fruit trees, and of course, plenty of coffee trees.

 

Finca Del Cafe
Photo credit: Kelly Getzelman/BRCC Blog.

 

Our Chapolera demonstrated how to prepare the perfect cup of coffee. She roasted dry coffee beans on a wood stove, hand-ground the coffee, and brewed the grounds, offering us samples of the amazingly smooth resulting beverage.

The entire tour gave us a greater understanding of how Colombian coffee is produced. Afterward, it was finally time to relax and break the seal on our Gunship Roast. We found the ideal spot on the property to bust out our AeroPress Go, hand grinder, and mug, and proceeded to brew the perfect cup at its source, all while enjoying the spectacular views of the Colombian landscape. Although we were no stranger to brewing this popular roast, there was just something surreal in learning about and enjoying a cup of BRCC coffee in the land of its origins.