ICON 35 – Sidra, Washed CM
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Sebastián is a coffee producer who’s made quite a name for himself over the last few years. The lots from El Placer are always incredibly interesting and he loves to utilise other plants growing on the farm such as lemongrass to create cultures for his fermentations. This lot is elegant and complex with notes like lavender, anise, chamomile, peach, and strawberry.
PRODUCER: Sebastián Ramírez
CULTIVAR: Bourbon Sidra
PREPARATION Washed, Carbonic Maceration
LOCATION: El Placer, Calarca, Quindío. Colombia
ALTITUDE: 1,500 masl
BAG SIZE: 150g
ROAST DATE: 01/11/23
Finca El Placer, owned by Sebastián Ramírez, is located in Quindio at the heart of the “Eje Cafetero” also known as the coffee triangle, a part of the Paisa region in the rural area of Colombia. There are four departments in the area: Caldas, Quindío, Risaralda and Tolima and is responsible for the majority of the coffee produced in Colombia.
Sebastián is a fourth-generation coffee producer who began working with coffee fourteen years ago and gained valuable experience managing his parent’s farm. This allowed him to develop the El Placer project which began with his family farm and now includes partner farms of small coffee producers in Quindío and Huila: Andalucía, La Sofia, La Carito and La Paz.
Their Processing Centre “El Placer Farms Hacienda Córcega Beneficio Center” is located in Quimbaya and is equipped with the latest technology, allowing the farms belonging to the project to process their coffee using cutting edge techniques. The project has also undertaken a Generational Relief initiative with the primary goal of educating and inspiring young individuals to pursue careers as coffee producers, thus playing a pivotal role in shaping the future generation of coffee producers.
The El Placer farm itself sits between 1,590 and 1,740 masl and is planted with high quality varieties like pink Bourbon, Gesha, Bourbon Sidra and Wush Wush. Sebastián focuses his attention on the fermentation process and works closely with Q-graders and Q-Processing professionals to perfect his protocols. He’s a young and very passionate producer who also dedicates his time to adopting and caring for rescue dogs with a local charity. Many of his coffee lots are named after his dogs.
Bourbon Sidra is thought to be a cross between the Typica and Bourbon lines that was discovered in Ecuador. The exact origins of the name are unclear, but because of its fruity and winey profile many think it may be named after the drink, cider. This variety is highly regarded due to its excellent quality potential and relatively high yields.
This lot has undergone a carbonic maceration before being washed. This controlled stage of fermentation takes place inside sealed tanks with CO2 added and helps to advance fermentation whilst slowing down oxygen dependant microbial activity.
After harvesting, the whole cherries are placed in the carbonic maceration tank for 24 hours. They are then pulped, the sticky fruit mucilage is then washed off and the clean parchment coffee is laid to dry inside “heldas”, which are polytunnels with retractable rooves. These structures help to regulate temperature and humidity and protect the coffee from rain or excessive heat from the sun, hallowing the coffee to dry in a slow consistent way, essential for quality and longevity.