My stay at this small Sumatra coffee farm in Bener Mariah allowed a close look at their coffee drying method. No matter how a coffee is processed, at some point, it will need to be dried. For washed coffees, drying takes place after the cherries have been depulped and their mucilage has been removed.
Coffee is dried in two main ways. The first is by spreading beans out under the sun on raised beds or patios. The second is by using dedicated mechanical coffee dryers. Coffee must be dried from approximately 60% moisture content to 11-12% moisture content. Coffee is typically dried on large patios made of cement. At Bener Mariah the sun-dried patio drying imparts a herbal, smokey nuance to the coffee which tastes spectacular in the cup.