This is our second lot of Cuilco this season. Cuilco is a region up in the Huehuetenango highlands, part of La Libertad municipality. This lot is a blend of a few farms in the area who sent many samples to us of individual lot separations. While the separations wind up being much smaller than if they blended their coffee together, it gives us the advantage of being able to weed out coffees that might have suffered for any number of reasons throughout the sorting and processing stages. In this way, we're able to build our own blend of only the lots we think to be of a specific cup quality. Anyway, we cupped many great samples from the region, and were able to bulk together this lot of coffee. The farms are mainly planted with a mix of Caturra and Bourbon varietals, and the altitude varies between 1,300 to just under 1,700 masl. This rather steep jump in altitude is illustrated well in the first picture below of a growing area in Cuilco.
This blend from the Cuilco region has a nice developed sweetness throughout the profile. The dry grounds have a smell of caramelizing sugar, butter, and vanilla (like the aroma released when making caramel), and almond. Hot water brings up a smell of raw honey and a nuttiness, and the break has an air of butter pecan ice cream - nutty and sweet. The cup has a straight-forward sweetness and roasted nut characteristics. City+ roasts have a flavor of light brown sugar and walnut, and a light butterscotch note. There's a bit of cocoa flavor too - especially in the finish - but like baker's chocolate, not adding to the overall sweetness per se, but more in the complexity department. Cuilco is a very transparent cup, and I would describe the acidity as malic to tartaric. City+ to Full City is where the balance lies and where slight fruit notes begin to emerge. Our City+ roast had a note of fig pudding, that along with a rich chocolate syrup flavor that completed the cup nicely. Great SO espresso, with extraction accentuating bold chocolate notes, and a candied nut sweetness.
|Processing||Wet Process (Washed)|
|Arrival date||July 2014 Arrival|
|Appearance||.6 d/300gr, 17-18+ Screen|
|Intensity/Prime attribute||Mild intensity / Layered sugars, nut notes, malic acidity|
|Roast||City+ to Full City+ works well, with darker roasts for SO espresso.|
|Recommended for Espresso||Yes|