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Origin Coffee Roasting sources delicious coffees from all over the world, but they do have a particular penchant for Colombian coffees; we've even heard them refer to Colombia as the Africa of the Americas. Perhaps that's because Colombian specialty coffees have such interesting flavours to offer, much like their distant cousins from the mother continent.
While it's best known for its well-established, industrial & mechanised coffee production practices, Colombia has also become a centre for experimentation at the cutting edge of specialty coffee in recent years. Enterprising coffee producers are testing out new ways to process and produce coffee that are yielding all kinds of different flavour experiences. El Mirador in Palestina, Huila is the home of just this type of producer.
Elkin Guzman is the latest in a long line of coffee growers, but rather than just follow tradition, he has dedicated himself to developing post-harvest processing techniques. He has experimented with many different approaches including lactic and acetic natural processing, as well as carbonic maceration and even co-fermentation. His experiments have made him quite a famous producer, the world over.
This particular lot is naturally processed but also incorporates a long multi-stage fermentation process, which yields the flavours alluded to in the name. It is also comprised entirely of Tabi, a cross-breed of Bourbon, Typica, and the Timor Hybrid released in 2020 by Cenicafe, one that Guzman is known for.
Suffice it to say, there are many reasons to be excited to taste this special Origin Artisan Reserve lot.
Phaedon's tasting notes
I tend to become embarrassingly giddy which I receive an Origin sample bag with El Mirador written on it. There have been many such lots now and they've all been quite exceptional. This one is no different, but that doesn't mean it isn't different to the lots that came before.
You see, what I love about Elkin Guzman's lots is that they're similar in their quality but they all have unique flavour profiles. This one is bursting with strawberry and tropical fruit flavours (like a great fruit punch juice) but there are also these more subtle notes that appear in certain brews. I also picked up on some malic acidity and apple flavours in my siphon. In my batch brew I detected some subtle warm spice notes. I also found the coffee quite effervescent in all my immersion brews.
- Flavour: Tropical fruit, cinnamon cake, strawberry, fresh mangosteen finish
- Body: Crisp, green apple
- Roast: Medium
- Acidity: Soft cherry
- Brewing: Milk-based espresso, espresso, plunger, pourover, AeroPress
Coffee details from Origin
The Tabi Punch Natural is harvested and produced at El Mirador, located in the town of Palestina in Huila, Colombia, owned by Elkin Guzman. The farm includes a broad collection of varieties such as Catiope, Mokka, Gesha, Bourbon, Caturra, and Tabi, which is a variety developed and released in 2020 in Colombia by Cenicafe by crossing the varietals; Bourbon, Typica, and the Timor Hybrid.
In the world of differentiated coffees, Elkin and his team have been experimenting and evaluating variables that help improve the quality of the coffees they handle to offer an excellent drink for coffee consumers worldwide for more than 13 years.
The area of the farm is 31 hectares, with sandy-loam and clay-loam soils with good organic matter conditions that aid in the excellent nutrition of their coffee trees. El Mirador is managed under semi-shade systems to optimize temperature regulation and the effect of photosynthesis in coffee plantations.
Harvest and post-harvest procedures are highly regulated for consistency and quality. The first step is to measure the sugar content of the coffee cherries (in degrees Brix), followed by density and volumetric separation. The final decision is which processing method is best suited to bring each lot to its fullest potential.
For the Tabi Punch process, there are 3 steps of fermentation:
The 1st step is to place the selected cherries in open cans for 36 hours along with a pre-made starter culture (that is prepared over a 4-day period) using a mix of locally produced tropical fruits, promoting respiration-oxidation of the coffee while at room temperature.
The 2nd step is to seal the cans for a period of 180 hours, during this period there is a production of alcohol, as well as the release of CO2 by the micro-organisms, present in the culture, as well as enzymatic fermentation.
For the 3rd step, the containers are uncovered and left to oxidize again for 36 hours.
Finally, after 252 hours of fermentation, the coffee is dried, with the skin intact, for a period of 15 to 25 days.
- Farm: El Mirador
- Owner: Elkin Guzman
- Varietals: Tabi
- Processing: Natural. 252 hour fermentation (36hrs in open cans using a starter made from local tropical fruit, sealed cans for 180hrs, open cans for 36hrs), sun dried for 15-25 days
- Altitude: 1680 masl
- Region: Palestina, Huila
- Country: Colombia