La Palmita - Colombia

La Palmita - Colombia


Competition Coffee for the
ordic Roaster Forum 2017

Variety: Castillo
Process: Fully Washed
Altitude: 1650 m.a.s.l.
Producer: Jose Pedro Pablo Rodriguez
Region: Garzon, Huila

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Finca La Palmita – Jose Pedro Pablo Rodriguez

Jose Pedro Pablo is a smallholder coffee producer from Garzón in the Huila department. On his Finca La Palmita, he cultivates coffee and fruit as an alternative source of income. The 4-hectare coffee farm lies at 1650 meters above sea level. All coffee he produces is of the Castillo variety.  

Post harvest
He lets the cherries ripen to a uniform burgundy red before harvesting them. Castillo cherries tend to ripen nicely halfway and show their red buttocks to the pickers. The part that is attached to the tree is often still yellow. Letting them ripen further greatly enhances cup flavour. Jose Pedro Pablo and his family largely harvest the entire farm themselves, with some help from the neighbours. The advantage of working with people close to the farm is that they learned once how to pick selectively, and keep on doing that year after year.

After a day’s harvest, cherries are screened through flotation and the good ones are dumped in the hopper. The processing unit sits right below it. Finca La Palmita has a small manual depulping unit and two fermentation tanks. The coffee is wet-fermented for 36 hours. During this process, Jose Pedro changes the water four times to keep a clean fermentation process.

Since the available flat space on Finca La Palmita is very limited because of the hilly topography in Huila, Jose Pedro can’t really build a drying patio. He only has a parabolic drying installation with raised beds and sides that can open up. He sees this as a disadvantage because the capacity of the beds is lower than a drying patio would have. This means that the coffee was dried evenly and slowly under filtered sunlight and with good air circulation around the parchment. Furthermore, the drying beds have the advantage of keeping the parchment cleaner and protecting it against rain or dew at night.

The result is a complex, sweet, viscous, and juicy cup profile of mixed berry jam and chocolate, with a long and nice acidity.