Imagine starting at sea level in the popular Mexican beach destination of Puerto Escondido and traveling along progressively steeper and curvier roads eventually arriving at a lush forest intercropped with coffee, bananas, corn, beans, fruit trees, and views of the Pacific Ocean in the distance below. This is the Oaxacan coffee growing region known as the zona Pluma where the Sierra Madre del Sur coastal mountain range is peppered with small coffee farms. Washed coffees processed on these farms have traditionally been aggregated into larger lots with a distinct regional profile. But the times are changing thanks to Enrique Lopez, an experienced coffee producer from the region who focuses on innovative postharvest processing and developing micro-lots from the zona Pluma. Enrique works with a handful of neighbors, including Sofía Elena Villarreal Valdés who produced this naturally processed Tipica combined with a Carbonic maceration Gesha on her 5-acre farm located in the municipality of Pluma Hidalgo. With Enrique’s guidance, Sofia now focuses on ripe cherry selection, floating to remove damaged and less dense beans, overnight fermentation, and gentle drying on raised beds over a period of 20 days. Carbonic maceration is a step in the fermentation process where the cherries are held in an airtight drum for 48 hours during which time the buildup of carbon dioxide creates an oxygen free environment that impacts the microbial activity and ultimately the coffee’s flavor profile.