COLOMBIA

Most domestic consumers of coffee in the United States are familiar with Colombian coffee. Known for its quality,  Colombia is the third largest producer of coffee in the world and own a unique claim in the coffee world. Colombian coffee is one of the few coffees in the world that is sold through the world under its “own” name. The two things readers of this website must remember about Colombian coffee it is “washed” and is almost 100% arabica beans.

Colombian coffee’s quality and reputation is derived from its ideal climate and geography for coffee as well as the Colombian people’s  passion, drive and fierce protection of their reputation.  Some might argue they take this commitment to excellence a little too far.  To protect against diseases that may destroy or harm their coffee plants, Colombians spray all cars and trucks entering the country!

Colombia’s dedication to quality coffee is a passion of the local farmers, national government, and corporation alike. The industry since 1927 has formed an organization called the Nacional de Cafeteros (FNC). The FNC is a private organization that works in favors of small and large growers in conjunction with the government. The FNC regulates quality of the crop grown and also educates coffee farmers on farming techniques. Not only does the FNC strive to educate their farmers and protect the industry, it is commendable that they also try to provide health care for the farmers as well.

The consistent quality of Colombian coffee starts with its ideal climate. Colombia produces coffee with no seasonal decline in coffee quality. The country has a wide variety of micro-climates to the various  terrain and topography. This allows for farming year round which results in a harvest period that last virtually the entire year.  How this benefits the consumer is if you stick to the highly regarded brands, you can have fresh, high quality, Colombian coffee year round.

If one looks at a map of Colombia, the coffee producing regions look like three larges lines parallel to the mountain ranges. Most of the coffee producing area lies along the foothills of the Andes. The Andes foothill region is most and temperate producing ideal coffee growing. In addition to the Andes Columbia has three secondary mountain natively called “cordilleras” running north to south.  At the heights in the Cordilleras is where coffee is grown.  The main coffee producing areas are along the eastern and central Cordilleras.  What our readers need to know is the best coffee in Colombia is found in this region  and expect to pay a premium for Medellin coffee. Medellin is widely regarded to be the finest coffee.  The characteristics of Medellin coffee is a heavy body with medium acidity and a full body. Other notable coffee plantations are Armenia and Manizales.

Colombia grades its coffee (ranked best quality descending) as Supremo, Excelso, and UGQ (Usually Good Quality).  In the United States you will usually find UGQ coffee and Supremo in  sold in specialty shops. The majority of Colombia’s Excelso export is to Germany and Western Europe. The difference in Supremo and Excelso coffee is generally due to the larger bean size found in Supremo. In addition, Excelso is more acidic than Surpemo. Both are medium body, aromatic, well balanced, and silky.

SPECIALTY COFFEE

Specialy coffee grown late

Many micro-climates with specific ecological characteristics.

Supremo Growers – Bucaramanga, La Manuela, Tula

Excelso – organic Tatama

Most specialty coffee has information with region and particular growers

FLAVOR PROFILE

Flavor:  Perfectly Balanced and Rich

Roast: Medium/Medium-High

ACIDITY 6

BALANCE 10

BODY  8

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