Nelson is a careful, judicious producer cultivating Caturra and Tabi varietals on his 4 hectare farm Finca de Charco at 1655 masl near Bruselas, Huila. Nelson is committed to farming in ways that reduce his dependency on chemical inputs and improve his farm’s health. He has also trained as a cupper with the local institute National Training Service (SENA), and feels confident and proud of his coffee’s attributes. He (like Edilma, Jose Uribe Lasso, Viviana, and many others you’ve seen on our menu) is a member of the Asociación Los Guacharos. For those who don’t know, Los Guacharos are a group of independent, quality-focused small producers near Pitalito in Southern Huila. The group is collectively converting to organic agriculture, making their own fertilizers and fungicides, installing complex water filtration systems that use gravity, stones and sand to remove all mucilage residues from waste water to not contaminate water systems.
This release is an almost 50:50 mix of a tabi lot and a Caturra lot from Nelson’s January harvest. We made the decision to blend them ourselves because the profiles paired nicely.
In both cases, cherries are picked as ripe as can be, depulped the same day, and fermented in a bag in a cool cement tank until they reach their ideal washing point for maximum sweetness- 36 hours in this case. The parchment is then fully washed. Nelson dries the coffee on a patio before moving it to a large raised bed with shade cloth. Parchment coffee is stored in grain pro bags at home to ensure that humidity is stable at around 11%.
The members of the Los Guacharos group, including Nelson, have started the conversion to fully ecological and regenerative production, close to biodynamics. The Guacharos produce a bio-fertilizing brew (called Super Magro) made up of organic minerals and waste products, molasses, bone ash and manure (among other ingredients), fermented with microorganisms collected from virgin soils and used as a fertilizer and protectant from disease. The Super Magro is edible, incredibly effective, and represents a producer-driven grassroots movement empowering producers to increase soil health, reduce costs and stop dependence on chemicals. Nelson brews Super Magro on his farm, while managing an active compost system and regularly pruning his trees.
We have been working independently with the Guacharos for several years. They are forcefully self-determined. The group’s power lies in their organization as an association, committed to improving all members’ coffee, and cooperating to sell directly, without working with intermediaries. They have all voluntarily trained at the local agricultural college in specialty coffee production: everything from agronomy and accounting to roasting, cupping and latte art. They collectively pay for consultancy in organic agriculture, and they work on each other’s farms installing water filtration systems and spraying organic fertilisers.
When we decide on the lots, they hire a truck and we pay for transport to the mill whose services we contract. We then export under our own license and pay the association directly from our Colombian bank account. They are an inspiring group full of smiles and the will to constantly learn and improve as artisans and improve the livelihoods of their members, all of which are very small-scale farmers of coffee and their own food crops.
We paid Nelson 1,750,000 per carga for the two lots that made up this microlot. To give context this is the link to the current market rate in Colombia for producers delivering parchment to their local Co-Op, it’s updated daily https://www.federaciondecafeteros.org/static/files/precio_cafe.pdf
Roasted for filter brewing.
We ship coffee as whole beans by default, if you need your coffee ground, please let us know at the checkout.
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