Peruvian Organic Vida-Alta
Grower Certified Organic
Roast Color: Medium-Dark
Body: Medium, smooth
Flavor Profile: Balanced, mildly sweet
Cupping Notes: Mild earthen undertones with a silken body.
Grown beneath a thick canopy of lush trees, this Grower Certified Organic Peru from Vida-Alta provides a perfect balance between earthen musk and crisp, bright acidity. The dry fragrance reveals a near-absence of sweetness with a husky, light molasses quality with an unexpected touch of tanned leather, forest herbs, and oak shavings. Once brewed, the aromas give rise to plum and jasmine, a rich burst of bittersweet chocolate, and toasted almonds.
The best organic lots from Peru tend to yield a somewhat "unpolished" coffee experience. The difference, here, is that the earth and clay latent in the roast are beautifully counterbalanced by a rich cup quality. Infused with silt, dry ash, and a decidedly loamy undercurrent, this cup presents a buttery body, unique brightness, unexpected flavor complexity, and wonderful depth.
Peru is a land of stark contrasts - high mountains, dense jungles, and barren deserts occupy this small country, all within close proximity. Peruvian territory was home to the Norte Chico civilization, one of the oldest in the world, and to the Inca Empire, the largest state in Pre-Columbian America. Relatively new to coffee cultivation, the areas of Northern Peru provide excellent growing conditions. The weather is characterized by year-round high temperatures and heavy rains from October through March, which soak into the beans and increase Peru's coffee yield.
In some ways, Perú has almost too much altitude. As a result, the range in quality is as varied as the landscape. In ideal conditions, high-elevation coffees develop much more slowly: with this attenuated time-frame, the beans have an opportunity to develop unique, complex flavors. Our Peruvian is a definite winner, revered for its delicate acidity and sweet round cup. Peruvian coffees are not universally exquisite, which makes us that much more proud to have secured beans from this surprising, mature harvest. These are, by far, the best Peruvian beans we've ever had in the shop.
Traditionally, coffee cultivation has been a major preoccupation - and one of the few sources of income - for rural families. Landholdings are passed on from one generation to the next, with farms producing both food for personal consumption and traditional cash crops for sale. Endowed with a varied climate, ample fertile land, and regular rainfall, Uganda has one of the best environments for agricultural and coffee production in sub-Saharan Africa.
Practicing traditional farming methods, Uganda's farmers plant their coffee trees in-between food crops (like banana trees) for shade. During harvest time, families get together and selectively hand-pick ripe cherries from the trees, which are then laid out to dry on specially made papyrus mats under the hot equatorial sun. This adherence to tried and tested techniques, on naturally fertile soils, arguably produce some of the best coffees in Africa, if not some of the best coffees in the world.