This is a blend of coffees small micro-producers in the Herrera and Rioblanco areas of Tolima department (state) in Colombia. The cup has a great sweet-savory quality, raisin and fig sweetness, spicy nutmeg, balanced brightness, an initial sweet sensation passing to a bittersweet finish with cinnamon stick notes. It's a classic Tolima cup all the way; deeply fruited with raisiny sweetneess, spice, black tea. City to Full City roast.
This is a blend of coffees from small micro-producers in the Herrera and Rioblanco areas of Tolima department (state) in Colombia. Tolima is one of my favorite coffee origins in Colombia, and the Tolima microlot offerings we evaluate through our Colombia Farm Gate program are some of my highest rated. All of these farmers in the Chuchos lot are members of Asoceas Cooperative, who we also use as a source for some of our super farm-specific micro lots like the Las Florestales farm of Maximino Guterrez. The entire area of Herrera and Rioblanco is a remote zone that is difficult to access. Part of the issue is that Tolima is one of the last active FARC areas where the conflict between the government and the rebels continue. Sadly it is always the farmers who suffer. Still, our ability to work with Asoceas and identify excellent lots means local farmers can obtain premiums for excellent lots. We have designated our blend as "Los Chuchos de Tolima" as a riff on the first lot we called Los Pijaos de Tolima, since; after all, this is not a purebred single farm coffee but a blend of farms, and Chucho means "mutt!" The cup is not second-rate coffee though: The aromatics here are very complex and sweet (which I attribute partly to the fact that we pay extra to have this coffee shipped in GrainPro-lined bags from origin). The dry fragrance has floral hints of hibiscus, as well as some red apple and flame grape, ensconced in a bed of milk chocolate scent. Adding the hot water, warm baked bread, scotch malt and baked apple come out. The fruit has a slightly winey ripe aspect, raisin sweetness, a hint of Kenya-type brightness and there is a nice caramel-butterscotch whiff on the break. The cup has a great sweet-savory quality. Raisin and fig sweetness dominate, and spicy nutmeg comes through in the finish. It keeps an even keel between brightness, body and finish, with initially sweet sensation passing to bittersweet in the aftertaste. The mouthfeel is silky and has a nice weight to it, but I would not call the body heavy. As the cup cools, the finish has a pleasant dryness, slightly tart, something I would describe as apple skins. As it cools, that finish turns into a pleasant tannic note, suggesting black tea. There are dashes of cinnamon stick and more nutmeg notes as the cup cools down. It's a classic Tolima cup all the way; deeply fruited with raisiny sweetness, spice, and black tea. Even in the lighter roasts I tested (City, City+), there is a Noir character that comes out as the flavors linger. Full City roast is very nice, with a full, rounded mouthfeel, and cup flavors dominated by milk chocolate. But it seemed more one-dimensional than the nuanced lighter roasts. As SO espresso, the FC roast was fantastic!