Colombia is such an interesting and exciting origin for us as coffee roasters. There are so many diverse cup profiles to be found across different regions, and coffee is being produced and exported at several intervals throughout the year. One of our importing partners who we work with in Colombia is Nordic Approach, and they have been buying coffee from Didier Uce Sanchez, produced on his farm Finca Clavelines, for the last three years.
Didier’s 7-hectare farm, quite large compared to the average coffee farm in Colombia, is located in El Diviso, Planadas in the country’s Tolima region. He has been involved in coffee from an early age, growing up on his parent’s coffee farm in the same region. For the last four years on Finca Clavelines they have been working completely organically. At 1,835m there are fewer diseases and insects than one might experience at lower altitudes, but there are still challenges associated with eschewing the more common place usage of herbicides, pesticides, fungicides and chemical fertilisers.
As well as growing Tabi, F7 and Variedad Colombia, Didier is tending to plenty of Caturra and Castillo variety coffee trees, of which this lot is comprised. Caturra is a dwarf mutation of the Bourbon variety which has the potential for a really good cup profile, but is unfortunately susceptible to pests and diseases. Castillo, on the other hand, is the result of around 23 years of research and development undertaken by Cenicafe in Colombia to create a resistant variety. The variety was released for sale in 2005, and unlike Caturra is resistant to coffee leaf rust. Named after Jaime Castillo Zapata, one of the lead scientists at Cenicafe, the name itself translates to ‘Castle’ which seems quite apt for a resistant variety! A myth amongst coffee buyers is that Castillo has a poor cup quality, but a combination of high altitude, good crop husbandry practices and tweaked harvesting protocols, plenty of farmers are producing Castillo outturns which cup incredibly, even alongside the older, more established varieties.
Once harvested by the 25-30 strong workforce, who sleep and eat at the farm during the harvest, the coffee cherries are depulped and dry fermented for between 25 and 30 hours, depending on the weather. After fully washing the parchment it is dried under parabolic shade coverings on Didier’s roof, until it has below 11% moisture content.
We were really intrigued by the delicacy and elegance of the sample when we first cupped Didier’s coffee last year. We hope you enjoy this pristine, clean coffee which seems to suit drinking at any time of the day.
El Diviso, Planadas, Tolima, Colombia
Crystalline sweetness, like white sugar on pink grapefruit, drives a mild, balanced cup. Expect almond & tea-like notes in the finish.