Rusty's Hawaiian Yellow Caturra Natural United States

Cup Profile

Coffee Notes


Aroma:9.0Orange, Passion Fruit 

Body:8.0Round, Creamy 

Flavor:8.0Caramel, White Wine 

Sweetness:9.0Ripe Peach, Ripe Mango 

Aftertaste:9.0Caramelized Pineapple, Pink Grapefruit 



This is a rare and lively cup of coffee with a citrusy aroma of orange and passionfruit, creamy body, and sparkling acidity. It has a delicate flavor of white wine deepened by notes of caramel and a sweetness of ripe stone fruit. The finish is exceptionally sweet with notes of pink grapefruit and caramelized pineapple.


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The Story

This coffee will roast on Tuesday, September 15th. Please order by 4pm CST on Monday, September 14th to receive this coffee. All coffee and merchandise in your order will be produced and shipped on the same day unless you specify otherwise in the Order Notes section of your shopping cart. Please see our FAQ for more details.

This highly awarded nano-lot of Rusty’s Hawaiian Yellow Caturra Natural has become one of the most sought after coffees we offer. We have less than 100 bags for sale this year and we don't expect it to last very long.

In 2010, farm owner Lorie Obra was recognized as Outstanding Producer by the Specialty Coffee Association of Europe while Rusty’s Hawaiian Yellow Caturra Natural garnered a 95-point score from Coffee Review and was awarded Grand Champion of the Hawaii Coffee Association’s cupping competition. In 2011, Rusty's Hawaiian repeated and won the competition again. That same year, champion barista Pete Licata, formerly of PT’s Coffee Roasting Co., worked with Rusty's Hawaiian to develop his competition espresso blend using the Yellow Caturra Natural. The coffee helped Pete to win 1st place in the United States Barista Competition and 2nd place in the World Championship in Bogota, Colombia.

With only a few hundred Yellow Caturra trees on the farm, this coffee harvest is an exceptional nano-lot. It started out as a difficult coffee, frustrating Lorie and farm consultant Miguel Meza with its results after the standard Washed Method. Thanks to her curious mind and scientific background, Lorie discovered that the Natural Process, rarely used in Hawaii, produces the intense flavor profile her Yellow Caturra has become famous for.

“It worked astonishingly well,” Miguel says. “The added sweetness and mouthfeel helped to balance the high acidity of this variety.”

"It’s also unusual for a natural-dried coffee. Instead of the simple grape and berry flavors that often result from this processing method, we taste enhanced characteristics of Yellow Caturra: vanilla, lemon and passionfruit. The result is a strikingly good pairing of processing method and coffee variety."

A note from PT’s: Although we have had a Direct Trade relationship with Rusty’s Hawaiian for several years, we were not able to visit the farm this harvest year. Therefore, we are not considering this coffee Direct Trade this year. Get more information on our Direct Trade program here.

Rusty’s Legacy

Rusty and Lorie Obra started their famous coffee farm on the Big Island of Hawaii in the Ka'u region in 1999 on a small parcel of land near the Mauna Loa volcano. Rusty, a retired chemist, and Lorie, a former medical technologist, both had backgrounds in science, which contributed to the overall quality produced on the farm. They started testing different processing methods to get the best flavors out of each variety grown on the farm. Hawaii has long been famous for coffee grown in the Kona region. Rusty had always dreamed of making coffee from the Ka'u region some of the best in the world.

In 2006, Lorie was left at a crossroads; Rusty had been diagnosed with lung cancer and passed away shortly thereafter. Lorie was left with the difficult decision to either sell the farm or try to run it herself. Faced with the daunting decision, she could not let go of Rusty's dream: to make Ka'u coffee some of the best in the world. Lorie's determination and hard work allowed Rusty's dream, and hers, to be realized in 2007. Rusty's Hawaiian placed in the top 10 of the Specialty Coffee Association of America's top 10 coffees for Hawaii / Asia / Indonesia regional competition. Miguel Meza noticed the success in the region, and could see the potential in Ka'u coffee. He moved to Hawaii and became a coffee consultant for the Ka'u Coffee Growers Cooperative. His guidance and encouragement helped Lorie refine her processing and experimentation.

Lorie is now recognized as one of the leading innovators and producers in the coffee world, making Rusty's Hawaiian one of the most decorated award winners over the last few years.

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