Brayan Joven brings us a near-perfect coffee. A crystal-clear profile with enough top-noted complexity to keep the adjectives rolling. Honey, apple, plum, cherry, and fig - a fruit basket for sure, with malic to tartaric acidity that cuts nicely. Juicy mouthfeel and body, and ultra-clean finish. City to Full City. SO Espresso.
Brayan Joven, the young producer from Mesitas, produced this lovely 17 bag lot made up entirely of Caturra. His farm, "La Esperanza", sits in the hills of Mesitas, a sub-municipality of Timan de Huila. The lowest part of the farm is 1750 meters and the top nearly tops 2000. At only 21 years old, Brayan carries the torch of the older generation of farmers, carrying on in the tradition of small producers in region, with all stages from picking to processing being handled right there on the farm and with oversight from Brayan and co-owner Marcela (who happens to be his sister - that's them in the first picture), all the way to the dry mill. This is one of, if not thee best coffee from this first container of Timan. They've experimented quite a bit with fermentation and mixing, and have for the time settled on a process of mixing two days of pickings. They pulp the first day's pick, allow to ferment in a tank overnight without water, then rinse before adding in the second day's picking. This mix is allowed to ferment waterless for one more day before washing, and then finally laying out to dry on raised beds in a green house they built on the farm (so one lot ferments 48 hours, the other 24). The fermentation process is interesting indeed, but perhaps their real "leg up" lies in the fact that sister Marcela is an experienced cup tester at the association they belong to. It's a great advantage tasting the coffee you've put so much work into, and being able to identify ways of improving cup quality. And from one cup tester to another, I'd say with this lot of coffee we are very calibrated!
This coffee from Brayan Joven proves to be one of the highlights of the year thus far. The dry fragrance is so nice, with elements of dried cherry and red grapes, and a thick scent of honey. Honey is a common thread weaving between many of the Colombia coffees we bought in this area, and Brayan's smells floral, and unrefined. Adding hot water to the mix brings on a smell of spiced red punch, some slight tropical fruit notes, and a touch of cardamom. As a brewed coffee, this one is such a beauty, a crisp, clean profile, with extreme clarity in flavor notes.The texture is very juicy, feeling buoyant on the palate, delivering the complex profile quite well. There's a flavor of grape juice at City to City+ roast levels, which also describes the acidity too - tartaric to malic. Red apple, plum, yellow cherries, and fresh fig notes interplay well with a long flavor of fresh honey. A dynamic cup indeed, this coffee has all that top note complexity we look for in a "dessert" cup, but with the balance and clarity afforded by the best Colombian coffees.