We have just released our first offering from Elkin Guzman, one of our amazing producer partnerships, from Pitalito, in Huila, Colombia. Alongside his responsibilities in Banexport’s cupping lab and being their internal agronomist, Elkin operates a farm of his own alongside his mother, Fanny Vargas. Elkin uses their farm as his personal laboratory, carefully examining every variable to maximize his output. As he walked us through his plots of varietals, many of which we have never seen before, he listed the perfect sugar content for harvest, average density, and ideal processing steps for each. He has developed a different set of guidelines for each step of each process for each varietal. His mind is constantly seeking improvement. This isn’t self-serving; he uses these tools to advise the producers in Banexport’s network on simple improvements they can make to increase their cup quality and their income tied to it.
Leading off our offerings from Elkin will be one of his hydra-honey processed lots. This is a hybridized process that he developed: it begins as a standard natural process before being soaked to rehydrate the cherry and is then de-pulped to finish like a honey. Tasting it in their lab warped our minds.
It immediately strikes you with vibrant tropical fruit flavors, most clearly expressed as guava. As the flavors develop on the palate, we are reminded of banana splits with flavors of vanilla bean, strawberry, pineapple, fudge, and dark nuts. The refreshingly clean aftertaste of fresh cut spearmint has an almost effervescent quality. It is the perfect coffee to push you into a good run through the sprinkler.
We will follow this up with a natural bourbon (that to me as a roaster felt like it was hiding magical secrets). Along with these two, we also have a single bag Gesha lot from one of the producers in Elkin’s network. Keep your eyes open for more details on these to come. We can’t wait to share them.
(images via Cafe Imports)