"We're No. 2!" It could be the chant around the farm and bodega at Cafe Sin Limites farm, because they have placed #2 in the Cup of Excellence for 2 years running! And the name sorta lends itself to motivational chants: Coffee Without Limits? What's with that? This is also our second lot of Sin Limites for 2009, a later harvest shipment after we sold out of our first. Jaime Cardenas and his wife Mabel Barrantes are the owners of this small boutique micro mill in the Lourdes de Naranjo region of the West Valley. The farm is at 1500-1700 meters and has produced some amazing coffees in the last 3 years, as the CoE track record proves. (This year's lot was #2 Fuego, Fire, which I guess is another 'new age' sort of naming scheme). Their coffee is, like the neighboring farm Herbazu, Villa Sarchi cultivar, which is a natural mutation of Bourbon. Certainly, this is true micromill/microlot coffee from a passionate small producer. In fact, the first time I dropped in on his small bodega, Jaime was sleeping in the warehouse with the coffee! There was a bed and small TV set with a "telenovella" blaring at full volume. He is a real crafts-person when it comes to his coffee and tries numerous experiments with depulping and drying the coffee to maximize the cup results. This lot is a "miel" or "honey" coffee, meaning that some of the fruit is allowed to dry on the parchment layer on the patio. It actually looks quite lousy as green coffee, but roasts up even and has a clean, sweet flavor profile. The dry fragrance from this batch of Sin Limites has tons of cocoa powder, nutty tones (at C+ roast), and maple sweet hints. There is a shift in the wet aroma, a more focused and volatile aromatic emerges, of almond oil essence, aromatic wood, cherry fruits, rustic honey sweetness. It's definitely a bright cup with some dimension, and a bit of funky rustic notes (not unlike the farmer that produces it!) The first thing that strikes you in the cup flavors is the complex brightness; fruited acidity, apple and cherry brightness, and an interesting smoky accent. It's not one of those thin, light-bodied, "bright-clean-simple" CR coffees; it has a fat, round mouthfeel, which pairs well with the almond nutty hint in the roast taste. I also think it's a cup that needs to cool a bit to appreciate the layers of taste. Honey notes, buttered toast, and lemon balm herbal suggestions come out as the cup cools down.