This coffee from Wilder Lasso is another stunning example of utilising processing to highlight the inherent qualities in single varieties and this semi-washed Gesha is bursting ...
This coffee from Wilder Lasso is another stunning example of utilising processing to highlight the inherent qualities in single varieties and this semi-washed Gesha is bursting with classic characteristics of that variety. Exhibiting intense sweetness and a clean, vibrant cup that reminds us of ripe peach, a floral note like lavender and white chocolate when in milk.
Although Wilder grew up on his mum and dads farm, El Diviso, he has only been working as a coffee producer since 2017, which is amazing considering the world class coffees that they are producing! Like many young people that grow up on coffee farms, Wilder left to get a degree and work in the city and up until recently he had a career as a vet and worked with some of the best horse breeding farms in Colombia! However, after visiting his family farm in 2017, he saw that they were struggling financially and decided to change career and take El Diviso in a new direction, with specialty coffee. With his training in genetics and love for learning, he set up a coffee variety program in the local town of Tocora and has been experimenting with fermentation and processing to elevate the cup quality and character. The family now have four small farms and produce a wide range of exotic varieties and experimental processes and their coffees have already featured multiple times in coffee competitions!
Wilder Lasso operates all four of the family farms utilising as many techniques as possible from Good Agricultural Practices (GAP). GAP is an international set of standards set out to ensure the safe and sustainable production of crops and livestock. These standards include practices such as intercropping to promote biodiversity, rejuvenating land that has degraded over time, use of organic fertilizers made from by-products, water management to reduce usage and treat wastewater and correct training of farm staff to ensure safety.
Wilder also has an out-growers program where they will process cherries from nearby farms, using their expertise, to help other farms get higher prices for their crops by boosting the quality.
Gesha (or Geisha) is a prized variety that often fetches high prices due to it’s unique and delicious flavour profile. The variety gets it’s name from the Gora Gesha village in Ethiopia where it originated from before it was taken to Costa Rica as part of a research program in the 1950’s. In Costa Rica it was found to have good resistance against Leaf Rust and so was taken over the boarder to Panama for cultivation there too. Initially Gesha was unsuccessful in Panama due to lack of altitude. However, fast forward to 2004 and after some experimenting, Gesha finally made a name for itself when it broke records by selling for a whopping $770 per kg!
Ever since that famous lot that was produced by Hacienda la Esmeralda in 2004, Gesha has been a desirable variety. While not all Geshas have the same quality and cup profile, good ones often exhibit high sweetness, very clean cup and floral notes like jasmine, coffee blossom and black tea.
Sometimes processing coffee can be considered as a balance between having a cup that is dominated by the variety and terroir or by the processes itself, either of these can be pleasant or not so pleasant. One thing that we love about this coffee is that the process doesn’t impart too much of it’s own character, but instead highlights the variety and terroir.
After picking and sorting via floating, cherries are pulped first and then undergo an anaerobic fermentation for 140 hours in the mucilage, submerged in fresh spring water. After this initial fermentation, the mucilage-covered parchment is laid to dry in the sun on raised beds for 18 days. During the stage of solar drying, mandarin peel is added to help stabilize the moisture content and impart some fragrance. While many coffees with fruit added during the processing can taste unnatural and overpowering, this lot has a perfect balance that just accentuates the natural flavour profile of the variety.