Villa Lupe is a small farm near the town of San Juan Sacatepequez northwest of Guatemala City. We had bought from another farm in this area, San Jose Ocana, until they had problems delivering good quality (who knows, maybe in 2011 it will be better). But we liked what we cupped in this Villa Lupe so snatched up this small lot. The farm is 20 hectares total (about 50 acres), owned by Oscar Bucaro and is at 5300 feet altitude. They don't process the coffee cherries here; that is done under the care of a large farm called Bella Vista in Antigua. In fact, I think that's part of why this lot is so good. Bella Vista does a great job with the wet-milling and dry-milling of the coffee, to the same standards of their prime Antigua coffees. We have cellared this lot for later in the season using GrainPro lined jute bags, and it is cupping better right now than it did on arrival.This coffee is part of our Farm Gate pricing program.
Fragrance of almond-hazelnut, malt grain and caramel are dominant in the dry ground coffee. These are all "sugar-browning" scents to some degree, related to roast, but in Villa Lupe they seem more like aromatic ester compounds intrinsic to the coffee itself. Adding hot water, the nutty scents sweeten, more like praline, which slightly floral accents emerge. My lighter roasts were the best, City to City+ roast range. At this level the cup has a very well-structured acidity, peach with mild citric hints. The roast taste is rather candy-like, and still has that clean hazelnut note. It's not a super powerful cup, but very refreshing on the palate, with a elegant and cleanly disappearing aftertaste. The body is light, with a silky feel. The refined flavors and finish suggest that this coffee is really well picked, with good cherry selection, and really well processed at the wet mill and dry mill. It has a very dense appearance in roasting, with the crease remaining tightly shut, something I like to see and that hints at high altitude farms and good drying of the coffee after the wet process. Makes a sweet SO Espresso too!
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