This week, we're shining a spotlight on a coffee that's not only delicious this year, but has been consistently excellent through all the years we've enjoyed it, Colombia San Agustin.
Thanks to a popular marketing campaign featuring a farmer named Juan Valdez, most Americans are aware that Colombia produces a lot of good coffee. Coffee grows in many parts of Colombia, but our favorite coffee growing region is Huila in southern Colombia. Colombia Huila typically offers a rich, balanced coffee brightened by lively citrus notes. The combination makes for an interesting and nuanced cup.
About seven years ago, we learned of an association of small farmers near the town of San Agustin in Hulia, the Asociación Los Naranjos. We're always interested in coffee from co-ops and growers associations, because the coffee is often higher quality, and buying from the co-op or association is a great way to support small coffee growers. The association helps the farmers improve their crop and, by combining the harvests from many small holdings (in Los Naranjos, the farms only average about 6 acres), is able to negotiate better prices for the processed coffee beans. Better coffee for us, more payment to the growers, it's a win-win situation. Since we like coffee from Huila, we asked for a sample, roasted and cupped it, and have been buying the coffee ever since.
This season's crop is a good example of why we love Colombia San Agustin. At a medium (Full City) roast level, it's a smooth, balanced coffee with caramel richness and complex fruit notes. A sip of the coffee hits the tongue with a burst of lively citrus, lemon, lime and grapefruit notes, and then sweetens with notes of apple, grape and fig before finishing into lingering caramel richness. It sounds like candy, but the flavors combine into a truly lovely cup of coffee. This season's Colombia San Agustin is yet again one of our favorite single origin coffees.
Do you remember Juan Valdez and his little donkey? Do you enjoy Colombian coffee, or remember the first time you tried it? Please share your thoughts Colombian coffee on the Facebook thread or in a comment on this blog. Or, if you'd like to share your opinion with the wider world, leave us a coffee review on Google or on your favorite review site. Not only do we value your opinions, but reviews help more people find us. Help us connect coffee lovers to fresh, quality coffee!
~ Carrie, Paul and all of us at Coffee by the Roast
PS: The photo is of a bag for Colombia San Agustin from a few years ago. We chose it because the bag is pretty and unlike this year’s design, features the association’s name.