Nilson Lopez is one member of a farmers association in Buesaco town, northwestern Nariño Department. We were able to cup several tables of samples which was in our late December arrivals. Most of the lots were so small that they are blended by region and score in order to have sizable offerings. Don Lopez on the other hand, presented a delicious sample of a 20 bag lot of coffee and so we were able to have them as a single producer. The association he is a part of are relatively new, but the leadership are not new to running an association, and they’ve set up a well organized warehouse in town. They are also experienced cuppers, which helps when working to calibrate on a quality target. Association membership is growing, and we tasted some truly impressive coffees when cupping at their warehouse. Farms are typically planted in Caturra and Variedad Colombia (F4 and F6 types), and this is a fully washed batch.
The dry fragrance pushes fruit tea and cider smells fresh from the grinder, raw sugar sweetness that has a rustic side like rice syrup, and citrus rind. Espresso roasts have a dark berry smell, along with a blast of dark cacao. The aromatics coming up off the wet crust are very sweet, more of a caramel side to it, along with an essence of cooked fruit and butterscotch. The citrus rind note comes full circle in the hot cup, a tangy/bittering note that’s like orange rind comes through when drinking hot, and as you move through the coffee, a lemon note also pops up amidst dried fruit flavors. In the drip and press roasts, the level of sweetness is intense and akin to raw sugars like palm or date, which holds up to darker roasting too. My Full City (Espresso) roast had attractive dried fruit notes that were hard to put my finger on under the weight of dark cocoa that’s ushered in with roast development. Pulling a shot of espresso after 4 days rest produces compact bittersweet chocolate flavor comparable to flourless dark chocolate torte, and velvety mouthfeel. The fruited qualities tasted in the brew don’t really come through in flavor, though there’s a berry-like brightness. All in all a versatile brew, and great single origin espresso.