This brilliant, soft-cupping coffee is grown in the southwest section of the Department of Antioquia. Don Pedro Echavarria established the 864 acre farm three decades ago with the vision of producing and offering to the world a superior quality Colombian coffee. The Santa Barbara Estate shines above other Colombian coffee producers because it is almost entirely integrated, meaning all stages of the production happen there and are carefully tracked by the farmers and workers. These stages include planting the coffee trees, picking the coffee cherries, removing the cherry pulp from the beans, drying the beans, milling the beans (removing the parchment layer and sorting the beans by size and grade), and of course, cupping the coffee constantly to ensure characteristic superb quality. Integrated coffee estates keep closer watch over their processes and as a result produce a more consistent cup. In addition to producing higher quality beans, integrated estates educate their farmers and staff, involving them in decisions and quality control.
Santa Barbara’s location contributes to the stellar nature of this coffee. The near-constant temperature in the region (generally around 75-80 degrees F all year), high altitude (5,280 feet above sea level) and the nutrient-rich volcanic soil are ideal for growing the Castillo varietal of Arabica coffee, a flavorful hybrid of the Caturra and Timor trees. Castillo is also known as Colombian 7. The Santa Barbara Estate uses washed process to remove the coffee cherries from the beans, and large wood-fueled dryers to cure the coffee.
As you sip this lovely cup, you might note its creamy body and hints of sweet lemon and dark chocolate.