A very sweet cup with tropical fruit aromatics, panela sugar, banana hints, and developed sweetness in darker roasts. This lot really excels throughout the roast range, although the lightest roasts are a bit grainy. City+ to Full City+.
Felix Guzman is a coffee producer near the town of Herrera, Tolima. We work here with the ASOCEAS cooperative to identify small lots of coffee with special qualities, and reward the farmer with higher prices for their coffee based on cupping scores. The first (and most important) screening of the incoming microlots happens right in Herrera, where the local cupper Newerly Gutierrez uses a Behmor roaster (with amazing skill, I might add) to evaluate the coffees. Each coffee lot, no matter how small, is kept separate and scored on its merit. I visited Herrera and it's a beautiful town set high up in a fairly remote area of Tolima. I could not visit until last year; concerns about instability persist in these more remote parts of Tolima, where the FARC Guerilla and their enemies in private armies, the Paramilitarios, kept the farming families in a state of constant fear. Everything seems peaceful and prosperous now, but reminders of the war are not so distant in the form of gutted houses and empty slab foundations in the towns along the valley headed to Herrera town. Anyway, the farmers in ASOCEAS have been working hard on their coffee quality and it shows in the cup. This lot from Sr. Felix is really nice!
The dry fragrance of the lighter City roast has banana, malt, and a grainy sweetness, where darker roasts have a much more caramelized sugar scent, a developed sweetness. The wet aroma has this same malty-banana fruit scent, a slight herbal tea note, and this very beautiful tropical fruit on the break; guava/passionfruit. The cup is right in line with the aromatics; sweet brown sugar (like raw panela sugar) notes, with banana and tropical fruits in the lighter roasts. I was delighted how sweet this cup remained throughout the roast spectrum. Perhaps only the lightest City roast I did was a bit chaff-like in the finish, with a bit of nut skins. Let it develop a little more after first crack. Everything from City+ to Full City+ was wonderful.