Words from Yellow Rooster Importers
In our third year of working with Peruvian coffees, we return to our second year in a row of serving this delicious lot by Ms. Esmérita Vásquez of La Coipa, Cajamarca, in northern Peru.
Our connection to Peruvian coffees runs deeper every year – we find that Peru offers some of the most dramatic landscapes and coffee growing micro-climates that the possibilities are endless. Just by jumping from one mountain to the next, we find the cup profiles changing from sweet and chocolatey to lingering grapefruit and raspberry-tart.
Having had the chance to travel to Peru this past summer, we arranged to meet Ms. Vásquez on one of our farm visits we do with as Yellow Rooster Coffee Imports. Driving into the mountains about two hours from the nearest city of Jaén, we then started the ascent by foot to Esmérita’s plot that she calls La Esperanza (Hope). She met us there with a huge smile and a lot of presence, machete swinging from her belt by her side.
She walked us through La Esperanza, a beautifully green piece of land at the top of the mountain, with a 360º view of the surrounding area. Her farming style is quite rustic, but the varietal selection speaks for itself. Her and her husband do all the work on the harvest, so days get long and mobility is difficult. But therein lies some of the magic to this cup — because it’s just the two of them, they physically can’t harvest and then rush to pulp the coffees in the same day, as is common in many parts of the world. Instead, they leave the day’s harvest tied up in grain-to bags right there on the farm to collect a few days later, which incidentally begins a slightly intense fermentation stage, somewhat mimicking the now-popular “anaerobic” style.
The cup is strong yet nuanced, a perfect combination of excellent climate conditions and land management.