We only receive deliveries of these coffee beans once per week, so you may need to wait up to a week for dispatch.
Our friends at Quaffee have a passion for great Colombian coffee with a selection of delicious examples to try year-round. In fact, they probably have the best selection of Colombian coffee available in South Africa. Warren, the owner, is passionate about coffee from this celebrated South American country and visits regularly as part of his sourcing process.
Given this love affair with coffee from Colombia, it's particularly exciting to see a Cup of Excellence award winning lot, sourced and roasted by the wonderful people at Quaffee. A Colombian CoE is a special thing in its own right, but we're particularly pleased that it's a Quaffee Colombian CoE!
About the Cup of Excellence
Cup of Excellence is a competition organised by the Alliance for Coffee Excellence - an American non-profit organisation which aims to benefit coffee farmers by helping them improve the quality of the coffee they grow. By recognising the top quality coffees in each country, they allow farmers to reap the benefits of significant efforts to produce the best crops.
Cup of Excellence entrants are scored through extensive blind taste-tests by highly qualified coffee professionals. The top coffees within a particular country are allowed to bear the Cup of Excellence name, meaning that they were scored among the highest. This award is given not to a farm or farmer, but a particular lot of coffee, sometimes just a few hundred kilograms.
About this coffee
A Cup of Excellence has a lot of weight in any country, but in Colombia, where the standards of production are so high, we can't help but feel that it's an even stronger accolade. Given the fact that this lot is actually ranked in the top ten (#7 in fact), you can understand why it commands a premium price (details on the auction pricing can be found below).
The coffee was grown at El Paraiso, by Jose Igancio Gomez Lopez, a 2nd generation coffee farmer. After completing his studies in accounting, he came back to the family farm and pursued his passion for coffee quality, building his own coffee laboratory and buying coffee from other growers, while also growing varieties such as Bourbon Sidra, Java, Castillo, Gesha and the Caturra that this lot is comprised of.
At the competition, this fully washed lot received a whopping cupping score of 88.41 and the judge's flavour notes (to be found below) seem to suggest they thoroughly enjoyed tasting it! This coffee is a rare find to treat yourself with, so grab a bag while you can.
Phaedon's tasting notes
Believe it or not, this is my first Colombian Cup of Excellence. I've tasted many delicious coffees from Colombia, including some special microlots, but never a genuine CoE lot. That's probably in part because Colombian coffees already command a premium, so a Colombian CoE is very hard, and costly to get a hold of. Needless to say, I was very excited to taste this one.
I must admit that I had some expectations of what this might taste like. It is, after all, a washed Colombian Caturra, so I've tasted many coffees of its ilk, but it took me completely by surprise. It is very delicate in nature, elegant you might say, but there's nothing subtle about the flavour. It's bursting with sweet citrus notes. I found a bit of lime in some cups, but mostly lemon and grapefruit. It doesn't taste like the fruits on their own though, but rather like desserts including those ingredients, perhaps sweetened with brown sugar or honey. It's quite delightful.
This is a rare tasting experience - one of the best lots, from one of the most respected coffee producing countries - so if you have the budget, I'd highly encourage you to give it a try, particularly in a pour-over, French press or siphon brew.
CoE judge tasting notes
- Overall: Brown Sugar (2), Citrus (2), Floral (2), Jasmine (2), Tropical Fruit (2), Apple, Apricot, Black Tea, Cane sugar, Cocoa, Fruity, Grape, Menthol, Orange, Peach, Red Currant, Red Grape, Stone Fruit, Vanilla, Yellow plum
- Aroma/Flavour: Citric Acid (4), Bright (3), Orange (2), Stone Fruit (2), Apricot, Berry, Coating, Crisp, Juicy, Lemon, Malic Acid, Mandarin Orange, Multiple fruit acid, Peach, Sweet, Tangy, Tart, Tartaric, Tartaric acid
- Acidity: Black Tea, Brown Sugar, Citric Acid, Harvey, Jasmine, Juicy, Lively, Round mouthfeel, Silky, Structured, Very sweet
You can read more about this lot on the CoE site
- Intensity/Prime Attribute: Our notes are brown sugar, berries and medium mouth feel, with a little peanut brittle to finish.
- Roast used: What we call a bump and kick with a shortened development time to 35 seconds. We start with intense heat, slow into yellowing and accelerate into first crack, removing heat as it approaches.
- Brewing suggestions:
- Espresso 1:2.1g 27sec
- AeroPress: 15g:200g – 3 min steep
- Plunger: 36g:400g
- Pour over/filter: 18g:300g (50 second bloom, water 84C)
- Farm: El Paraiso
- Grower: Jose Ignacio Gomez Lopez
- City: Buesaco
- Region: Nariño
- Country: Colombia
- Processing: Washed
- Species/Variety: 100% Arabica - Caturra
- Auction lot size: 405kg
- Year: 2020
- Cupping score: 88.41
- Accolades: CoE Colombia 2020 Lot #7
Quaffee's transparency information
- Sourced from: Caravela
- Price: Auction Price: $25.30/lb; FOB Price: US$$26.70/pound
Logistics: R11.50 / kg
Lot size bought: 1 x 30kg
- Relationship: Our relationship with Caravela goes back to 2008