Deep in the interior of Colombia’s department of Cauca lies the province of Inzá, known in Colombia as La Tierra Adentro. On a good day, it is a two hour drive from Popayán and La Plata in either direction, but frequent mudslides and road closures mean it’s often not easily accessible. On clear days in the village of Inzá, one can see straight up to the Nevado del Huila, the highest volcano in Colombia. The famous Paez river runs east through the valley, connecting Cauca and Huila. Very little coffee is grown below 1750 masl with a great portion growing at 1900 masl. Colombia, Castillo, and Typica are found in the region, but Caturra is the dominant variety.
Asorcafe Producers’ Association of Inzá was founded in 2004 by ten coffee growers who were tired of selling their coffee to parchment buyers who only offered prices below the national market. Asorcafé exudes an entrepreneurial spirit as they have become leaders of their coffee growing region. Asorcafé, in conjunction with private and state organizations, provides aid to their members including subsidies for domestic economy, education, job training, and healthcare services.
The coffee producers of Inzá were in many ways the original inspiration and motivation for the creation of Red Fox Coffee Merchants, from who I buys my coffees. Their twelve-year relationship with Asorcafe has been rewarded with success in quality and new discoveries. Red Fox buys coffees from three main villages or counties within the Inzá municipality — Pedregal, San Antonio, and the town of Inzá. Each village is often composed of just a handful of families. And there aren’t more than 20-30 hectares planted with coffee in each village either. These village lots represent something very specific and repeatable.
The community of San Vicente de San Antonio has been turning out some of the most desirable coffees from Inza. They don’t lack in any area. Aromatics are heavy, with characters ranging from floral honey to ripe fruit to dark sugars; acidity is clean, running the gamut from subtle to expansive; mouthfeel is supple and viscous, reminiscent of apple juice with even a honeyed texture; and last but not least, sweetness is supreme. Delicate golden raspberry and white peach splash over the edges of the pool of vanilla, almond, and honeycomb. It’s a little sunshine in the morning.
La Tierra Adentro, Colombia
DEPARTMENT - Cauca
MUNICIPALITY - Inzá
VILLAGE - San Vicente de San Antonio
PRODUCERS - Edimer Calambas, Faiber Tunja, James Casso, Jose Isler Rivera, Jose Tunja, Juan De La Cruz Tunja, Yenni Soraida Tunja
ALTITUDE - 1850 masl
VARIETY - Caturra, Castillo, & Colombia
EXPERIENCE - Sun upon closed eyes.
plus shipping & handling