LAS PERLITAS. KOLUMBIEN. HUILA. SANTA MARIA STATION.
FILTERKAFFEE V60 / Aeropress / Kalita / French Press
We taste: GRAPE JUICE. ORANGE. BROWN SUGAR.
Fruchtig, süß und saftig. Der Kaffee hat alles, aber von nichts zu viel. Balanciert, rund und nicht zu viel Säure. Ein absoluter Allrounder.
Aufbereitung / processing : washed
Varietät / variety : Caturra. Typica
Anbauhöhe / height : 1600-2100m
FOB: $ 2,58/lb
Händler / Importer: The Coffee Quest, NL
THE COFFEE QUEST'S STORY
The region around Santa Maria in Huila has been a stronghold for guerrillas during the 60-year conflict that ended recently, making the town virtually inaccessible for several decades. The civilian population suffered tremendously from the conflict, always being in the middle between the warring parties (guerrilla, para-military groups and the army). Only during the start of the peace negotiations around in 2012, the FARC pulled out and the town opened up for outside influence and economic development. In 2018, The Coffee Quest partnered up with Asociación La Victoria to guarantee a more stable income for the group and other farmers around Santa Maria. The chosen method was setting up a buying station in the centre of town. The station fully focused on specialty purchases in the region and functions as foothold within the local community.
In short: The Coffee Quest Colombia took the traditional buying station model, but added a Quality Lab. The idea is to provide access to the specialty market. By incorporating sensorial characteristics into the buying decision, next to looking at the physical aspects of the coffee beans.
This is an excellent step towards better living income for producers by providing access to the market for quality coffee. The station, that has a cupping lab “manned” by Tatjana and Alberto, and has already become a popular meeting place for the members of the group and many other farmers. From 2017 to 2020 we have grown from 30 to over 200 farmers delivering coffee to the station, purchasing about 6 times more than in the first year. The improvements would not have been possible without our roasting clients that have shown interest in supporting all of the developments of the Santa Maria station and our local partner La Victoria.
Las Perlitas: Throughout the harvest, it’s quite common that small-holders produce lots that aren’t large enough to be exported on their own. However, the quality is often just as good (or better) than samples received from larger lots. As such, we decided to buy all coffees, regardless of size and create a specialty blend based on cup profile, with a quality that would compare to a Micro lot. The result is Las Perlitas or “The Little Pearls”, various small lots from producers around the Huila region, whose farms range in elevation from 1,600 to 2.100 m.a.s.l. and grow quality varieties.