Please Note This coffee is solid, but not among our top-tier offerings. We are confident to sell it with no reservations. This coffee landed more than 8 months ago.
Out of stock
Juan Danilo Flores Urrego | Finca Las Mañanitas
Aguacates community, Urrao municipality, Antioquia department, Colombia
Fully washed and dried on elevated tables inside solar dryers that provide protection from the rain
November - January
Best of Antioquia is a competition hosted by the Federación Nacional de Cafeteros Colombianos (FNC), the most advanced and ambitious NGO working on behalf of a national specialty coffee sector anywhere in the world. Colombia exports the second highest volume of arabica coffee on earth after Brazil, and it’s not controversial to observe that the qualities exported are categorically higher and more diverse than almost any country of comparison. Colombia’s 12 million bag export average is achieved by over half a million farms averaging about 1.5 hectares apiece, which is a staggering level of small-farm excellence across the board. After almost 45 years of cupping and buying as much Colombia coffee as we can take, we are still amazed annually and what can be found.
The goal of the FNC’s regional competitions is to facilitate this discovery for buyers. Like micro-Cup of Excellence contests, entries from throughout a single department are screened by Federación cuppers and then the top-scoring finalists are presented to a select global audience with full traceability and an open-pricing auction platform. Often the FNC interviews the producers live online while the auction is underway, letting them show their farms and tell their stories to the global audience.
Juan Danilo Flores Urrego’s coffee was one of Royal’s purchases at this year’s auction. Juan’s farm is 14 hectares in total, although only 3.2 are planted with coffee; the rest is divided between fruit production, including lulo, a popular South American tree fruit, tree tomato, and milk cows. Juan Danilo has lived on the farm since he was very small, growing up on the land with his family. The farm, Las Mañanitas, was originally managed by his parents—it was only 3 years ago that he purchased the land from them and began a new career as an independent farmer himself. The farm had long used agrichemicals, which had become increasingly expensive over the years, and which had, in Juan Danilo’s estimation, damaged the farm’s potential, and also made the environment less healthy for him and his children, the farm’s new caretakers. Under his ownership the use of chemicals has been reduced.
Harvest on Las Mañanitas follows a unique but not-uncommon pattern for small farms processing their own coffee. Coffee is picked and depulped daily on the farm, but then mucilage parchment remains in the fermentation tank for a week, with each day’s pickings added to it, for up to 8 days total. The environment at this altitude is quite cold and fermentation progresses slowly as a result. The limited processing capacity and continuous picking needed to ensure perfect ripeness often leads small farms to blend cherry, or in this case mucilage coffee, for multiple days in order to have adequate volumes to depulp, or ferment. In this way, for Juan Danilo’s coffee specifically, there ends up being a range of fermentation times contained in a single “batch” of coffee—with each batch having an average of about 3 days’ time. Despite the unorthodox blending step (perhaps because of it), Juan Danilo’s coffee is exquisite: floral, tropical and juicy, with East Africa levels of acidity and a syrupy sweet structure.
Juan Danilo and his family of 4 are members of the local Cooperativa de Caficultores de Salgar, which maintains a collection point in Urrao, and which extends a lot of necessary services to their members to support their development. The cooperative also sponsors individual growers’ participation in department-wide or national competitions like Best of Antioquia.