This is a separated lot from Miguel Rojas, who's coffee was bought and processed at the Helsar de Zarcero micromill. It stood out on a table of coffees cupped while in Costa Rica as having the balance we look for from a clean example for the region, and showed additional fruited and spice characteristics which more than informed our purchase! This coffee deserves it's own spotlight, and the Helsar mill was one of the first in the region to break up lots by individual producer instead of bulking coffees together. The coffee quality is due in part to the excellent processing methods at this mill and the manager, Ricardo Perez. Each year they make improvements, recently adding new dry milling equipment and warehouse space for improved storage of coffee in the resting phase (reposo). Helsar uses forced demucilage equipment to machine-wash their coffee, an efficient method with low environmental impact that has similar outcomes to traditional wet-fermentation processing. As for the farm, the vast majority of Miguel's finca is planted in Caturra cultivar, and this is a separation of solely this cultivar.
The dry fragrance of Miguel Rojas shows a fair amount of cinnamon spice accenting the ground coffee, and threading the needle between raw, minimally processed sugars, and a more refined sweetness like white table sugar. A toasted almond note is released from breaking through the wet crust, perfumed sugars, and a raisin hint. The cup of City roasts is loaded with caramel sugars and butter toffee, an apple-like flavor coming up as the cup cools. The acidity is also a lot like apple juice, a sort of 'fresh' aspect injected in the profile, tying cup flavors together. Fruited tones seem a bit more apparent as you pass the City+ roast level, not straying too far from elements of apple and pear, and a pleasant cinnamon-stick hint rounds out a bittersweet chocolate feature in the finish. This is an extremely clean brewed coffee, and the toffee-nut sweetness is what lingers in the aftertaste. And as espresso, expect a healthy dose of fruited cocoa, and wonderfully tart citrus aspect.