Image Alt

Tim Wendelboe

Your Coffee Subscription – May 2021

Dear coffee subscriber,
May is here in Norway, the cherry trees at Tøyen are blooming and we are getting ready to celebrate our constitution day.

This month we will be sending out three coffees from the farm Finca Tamana. These coffees were harvested in July last year, arrived to us in the beginning of this year and now we are finally ready to share them with you.  

Finca Tamana Caturra & Variedad Colombia 1 + 4 bags
Flavour notes: Sweet chocolate, caramel & red fruits
Producer: Elias Roa
Harvest: July 2020
Origin: El Pital, Huila, Colombia
Process: Washed
Cultivar: Caturra & Variedad Colombia

When Elias Roa bought Finca Tamana in 2011 most of the farm was planted with the two cultivars Caturra and Variedad Colombia. Since then the Caturra trees have been attacked by leaf rust almost every year and the quality and production has therefore been a bit up and down. The variedad Colombia is resistant to leaf rust and has consistently been tasting better compared to the Caturra over the years. That is why we have recommended Elias to replant most of his Caturra trees with either resistant hybrid cultivars or better tasting traditional cultivars like Bourbon and SL28. There are still some Caturra left on the farm and probably always will be, but since the production is very small and the flavour is very similar to the Variedad Colombia we are normally blending the two based on harvest date and quality. In general the lots we buy from Tamana are mixed like this because separating them in to daily pickings is normally not practical in terms of milling, packing, etc. I still feel that we are able to preserve the uniqueness in these coffees and this lot is an excellent example of the «standard» quality from Tamana. 2020 turned out to be a good year for quality with good growing conditions that resulted in an overall high quality of the coffees from Tamana. You can really taste more fruit in this harvest compared to the 2019 harvest. In addition to good growing conditions Elias started using his new eco-mill which contributed to very consistent quality. He is now fermenting his coffees in stainless steel tanks and using a mechanical mucilage remover to wash the coffees. Still the coffees are soaked in clean water over night before it gets dried under shade, but the new mill has greatly reduced the water usage on the farm.
Expect a really sweet caramel like (or panela if you are Colombian) sweetness with subtle fruity flavours.

Finca Tamana Castillo 2 + 5 bags
Flavour notes: Herbal, marzipan & dark chocolate
Producer: Elias Roa
Harvest: July 2020
Origin: El Pital, Huila, Colombia
Process: Washed
Cultivar: Castillo

Castillo is the advanced variedad Colombia hybrid developed by the Colombian research organisation Cenicafe. The researchers spent over 30 years breeding this cultivar that is resistent to leaf rust and has potential to produce a very good cup quality. Since it’s launch a few years ago, Colombia experienced a huge outbreak of leaf rust, but most farmers recovered in record time as the Colombian coffee growers federation helped supporting them with new Castillo seedlings to replace the traditional susceptible cultivars like Bourbon and Caturra.  It means that over 60% of the coffee grown in Colombia today is Castillo cultivars. But what about the cup quality? There has been a lot of scepticism among the quality driven coffee professionals and a fear that the tasty Caturra will be replaced by an inferior hybrid like Castillo. I will not debate here wether one is better than the other, but all I can say is that I have both tasted exceptional Caturra and Castillo coffees as well as terrible versions of both in the past. A lot of coffee tasters  say that in general the hybrids can have a slight more herbal aftertaste, which can be true, but we have found that when the cherries are picked at a deep purple colour, the herbal flavours are tamed and you get more sweetness and fruity flavours in the cup. I personally believe it all boils down to how you harvest, process and roast the coffee and of course how healthy the coffee trees were during production. 
This particular Castillo comes from seeds that were mixed from many different areas and is called «Castillo general» or the general Castillo. (there are several different types of Castillo and some of them are already in production at Tamana) It is a really intense and sweet coffee with a nice marzipan like flavour with loads of dark chocolate and subtle fruit in the background. When you taste this coffee next to other coffees from Tamana you might not notice the herbal character that easy, but putting it next to an Ethiopian or Kenyan coffee you really get the herbal character in the cup. You might want to give that a try.   

Finca Tamana Bourbon 3 + 6 bags
Flavour notes: red fruits, black tea & floral
Producer: Elias Roa
Harvest: July 2020
Origin: El Pital, Huila, Colombia
Process: Washed
Cultivar: Pink & red Bourbon

This is the third  harvest we have of the red and pink Bourbon cultivars from Finca Tamana. (The colours refer to the colour of the ripe cherries on the plant.) I managed to get some seeds from a really nice red Bourbon in 2014 that I gave to Elias and we planted these seeds together in June 2014.  At the same time Elias had gotten a handfull of seeds from a neighbour of some pink Bourbon that were planted the same month.  In august 2015 the trees were ready to be planted in a small hill at Finca Tamana. The first harvest came three years later but the quantities were too small to be able to export any of it. In the following years we have been able to buy tiny amounts of this coffee as production has gradually increased.  I am happy to say that these Bourbon cultivars are definitely among the best coffees we have tasted from Tamana. Both are really sweet, delicate and fruity but with subtle differences. The pink bourbon has so far been tasting slightly more floral and the red Bourbon more like ripe red berries. Hopefully in the future we will be able to roast these separately but at the moment the quantities are so small that it does not make sense to separate them during picking and milling. Fortunately there was enough to send out to some of our subscribers this year. I hope you will enjoy it as much as I am.

Thanks for reading and as always, we hope you enjoy the coffees and learning from our monthly videos. If you need some brewing tips, visit our website.
I hope you will enjoy the coffees 
Tim W

Cart
Follow Us
X