AZAHAR SMALLHOLDERS , HUILA COLUMBIA - SUGARCANER DECAF
COLUMBIA, CATURRA, CASTILLO & TABI
TASTING NOTES - GOLDEN SYRUP, TOFFEE, RED APPLE AND CHOCOLATE
This Decaf Pioneers Blend is another exemplary coffee from Azahar’s pioneering producing partners in southern Huila. A pioneering producer is a grower who is not only innovating in their field and a pillar of their community, but also someone who Azahar have worked with time and again over the years by cultivating a close and transparent relationship. In this blend, a central quality control team has married the profiles and attributes of coffees from the municipalities of Palestina and Pitalito.
The Art of Production
This coffee utilises a washed process prior to decaffeination. Ripe cherries are selectively handpicked de-pulped and then traditionally fermented in tanks for 20-30 hours to break down the remaining mucilage. At this point the coffee is thoroughly washed in clean water, followed by sun-drying on raised beds for 20-30 days, until the optimum moisture content has been reached.
The decaffeination process is solvent based, and the agent used for the process is ethyl-acetate (also known as ethyl alcohol). It is derived from a mix of acetic acid (vinegar) and a natural extract distilled from sugar cane, blackberries, beets or sometimes grapes. A direct-solvent process is used meaning that the beans are steamed to open their pores and are then rinsed in ethyl acetate repeatedly to remove the caffeine. Next the beans are dried but not completely, 10-12% humidity remains, and then the open bean is sealed with natural wax that in no way affects the flavour, fragrance or aroma of the coffee.
The town of Palestina is located in the South Huila region. The region is known for its altitude and fertile soils. This contributes to higher levels of soluble solids in the bean. Huila department is located in the South-West of Colombia, spanned by the Andes mountains.