Chicchi by Marigold: Colombia

Chicchi by Marigold: Colombia
  • department nariño
  • region pacifico
  • producer libardo lasso muñoz
  • process washed
  • altitude 1.900 - 1.950 masl
  • variety colombia
  • suggested for filter
  • tasting notes red berries, black currant, honey, chamomile

Our single origin Colombia beans were grown in the Nariño Department of Colombia, an area in the southwest corner of the country on the border with Ecuador and the Pacific ocean coast. Libardo Lasso is a second generation organic farmer who grew our beans on his farm, named El Balso after the local Balso tree. He grows both Caturra and Colombia varieties.

Coffees grown in this part of Nariño are unique as the terrain is particularly difficult to cultivate. High altitudes and steep hillsides make industrial means of coffee production impossible, so everything is carried out by hand. Farms are tiny and very remote, so cultivation is a family practice. Libardo has two uncles and a brother all growing coffee in the same area.

El Balso is part of a cooperative established in 1977 that sets extremely high standards for their coffees. Only beans that register less than 11% moisture and cupping scores of 86 or higher are selected. The cooperative has grown from its initial 50 members to more than 1,670, as farmers are incentivized to produce higher quality coffees because it’s more profitable. Four coffees from here have taken first place at the Cup of Excellence, and multiple others have placed.

Very high altitudes, extremely dry harvest season and low humidity affect the flavor notes in coffees grown in this region, making them very different from coffees grown anywhere else in Colombia. Once the coffee cherries have been harvested, they’re fully washed following traditional methods. The coffee is then dry fermented and then sun dried, typically in parabolic dryers. Everything is done by the farmer on-site in micro-mills on their tiny farms. Drying typically takes just 10-18 days to dip below 11% moisture making the beans ready for export.

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