Region: Southern Huila
Elevation: 1,350 to 1,800 masl
Varieties: Castillo & Caturra
Colombia is one of the largest coffee producing nations in the world alongside Brazil, Vietnam and Indonesia. Coffee was introduced to Colombia in the early 1800s and has traditionally been recognised for its high altitude and higher-quality Arabica coffees while boasting incredibly efficient supply lines. In recent years, the Colombian farmers with assistance from the Colombian Coffee Federation (FNC - Federación Nacional de cafeteros) have done a remarkable job in growing and promoting the export of genuine speciality coffee, producing impeccable quality.
Over the last few decades, Colombia had a lot of issues with the Guerrilla movement FARC, which prohibited infrastructural and agricultural development in certain parts of Colombia. As a result, coffee production in Southern Colombia (Huila, Cauca & Narino) was slow and limited. In recent years, the Colombian government has negotiated a truce with FACR and the Southern parts of Colombia have started to flourish.
Although there still a long way to go regarding infrastructural development, Huila is now the largest coffee producing departments in the country. This coffee comes from several farmer cooperatives in the Southern Highlands of the Huila region, surrounding Pitalito and San Agustin. Coffee is collected from a few hundred farmers, where the average size of a farm is around 3-4 hectares. After the coffee it received it’s processed and put through a stringent QC system, where coffee with a specific profile is used. “Alto Vista” means high view in Spanish. Huila is the region with the highest coffee production in the country, so Alto Vista is an appropriate name for this coffee.
This coffee was processed using the traditional washed method. After the ripe red cherry is picked, it’s delivered to the wet mill, and the cherry is sent to flotation tanks to separate any floaters (over-ripe & underdeveloped beans). Only prime red cherry is cleared for pulping. After pulping parchment is fermented for 24-48 hours (depending on the local weather conditions at the time). The clean washed parchment is subsequently sent for drying. Once the parchment coffee is at its optimal moisture level, it is sent for processing at the dry mill and export.