||Bolivia El Fuerte Washed Longberry 2020
This farm was named in honour of the 'Fort of Samaipata', which is a unique ruin in Bolivia. El Fuerte de Samaipata (Fort Samaipata), also known simply as 'El Fuerte', is a pre-Columbian archaeological site. It's unique in that it represents the legacies of Inca, Spanish and Chanè cultures, and it's one of Samaipata's main attractions. Situated in the eastern foothills of the Bolivian Andes, in the Santa Cruz department of Florida province, the archaeological site is also a UNESCO World Heritage site.
El Fuerte de Samaipata is not actually a military fortification, but it is generally considered a pre-Columbian religious site. It was built by the Chané people, who were a pre-Inca culture of Arawak origin. There are also ruins of an Inca city built near the temple; the city was built during the Inca expansion to the southeast. Both Incas and Chanés suffered several raids from Guarani warriors, who invaded the region from time to time. Eventually, the Guarani warriors conquered the plains and valleys of Santa Cruz, and destroyed Samaipata. The Guaranis dominated the region well into the Spanish colonial period.
The Spaniards also built a settlement near the temple, and there are remains of buildings of typical Andalusi Arabic architecture. The Spaniards abandoned the settlement and moved to the nearby valley, where the town of Samaipata is currently located. The archaeological site at El Fuerte is unique, and it encompasses buildings of three different cultures: Chanés, Incas and Spaniards.
El Fuerte was a first experiment in developing coffee in a region that has excellent characteristics for producing amazing quality coffee (good soil conditions and high altitude), but which traditionally sees little coffee production and produces no specialty coffee. After consulting with a specialised agronomist, Agricafe (which runs the farm) chose the region of Agua Rica as the ideal location. It's at the edge of the Amboró National Park (some 20 KM east of Samaipata).
Several different varietals were tried initially. Those varietals included Red Bourbon, and Yellow and Red Caturra – although nowadays Agricafe has ventured into growing other varietals. Caturra and Typica (both are traditionally grown in Bolivia) are commonly seen, but alongside other slightly rarer varietals like Java and Geisha. Although there is little need for shade trees because the altitude keeps the temperature down, other trees were planted to protect the coffee trees from the strong winds that are common in the region.
The decision to plant coffee at El Fuerte was something of a risk, but it's one that has undoubtedly paid off. The location has proved to be strategic and the weather is ideal; so much so that a second wet mill will soon be established at the site. Once it is, all coffee produced in the Samaipata farms will be processed at El Fuerte.
With this coffee, you'll get a bright zing of acidity up front, which reminds me of green apple. That's backed up by dark chocolate and a malty sweetness which slips into soft brown sugar on the finish. On the aftertaste the Longberry varietal really stands out with a hit of black tea.
Department: Santa Cruz
Farm: Finca El Fuerte
Owners: Fincas Rodriguez
Altitude: 1,550–1,700 m.a.s.l.
Variety: Java (Longberry)
Fermentation: Wet fermentation
Drying: Stationary dryer (70 hrs/40º temp)
Green apple, dark chocolate, brown sugar, black tea
Clean cup (1–8): 7
Sweetness (1–8): 6
Acidity (1–8): 7
Mouthfeel (1–8): 6.5
Flavour (1–8): 7
Aftertaste (1–8): 6.5
Balance (1–8): 6
Overall (1–8): 7
Correction (+36): +36
Total: (max. 100): 89
Medium – take this through first crack, slowing it down just a little, and then into the gap and drop it out.
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