Juan Restrepo Jardin 4 Caldas Natural
Elmer and Juan Felipe Restrepo have mastered the art of producing clean and fruit Naturals in Colombia’s wet climate. We love these innovative Natural lots for their clean and fruity profile that are available in large volumes
- COFFEE GRADE:
- Caldas Natural
- Finca Jardin
- Castillo, Caturra
- 1,410 to 1,490 meters above sea level
- Elmer & Juan Felipe Restrepo
- HARVEST MONTHS:
- Year-round, depending on the region
SENSORY: Black Cherry, Dark Chocolate, Brown Spice, Plum
About This Coffee
Elmer & Juan Felipe Restrepo, the father and son team behind Finca Jardin & Finca Chambacu are re-envisioning coffee production in Chinchina. The rolling hills of Chinchina, Caldas, the third biggest coffee producer in Colombia after Pitalito in Huila and Planadas in Tolima, are home to bigger estates that mainly focus on high volume commercial quality production. Elmer and Juan Felipe are redefining their coffee production with a hybrid approach.
While they continue to devote a portion of farm to commercial production, they have been increasingly developing their specialty offerings and experimenting with new and varied processing styles.
Juan Felipe has taken the helm of the specialty aspect of the operation. He has been a passionate experimenter, developing countless processing protocols to enable him to bring out the best in the coffees from their 4 specialty plots – El Placer, Jardin 1, Jardin 2 and Chambacu.
Elmer and Juan Felipe employ 12 year-round workers who carry out selective handpicking during the harvest and help with farm upkeep in the off-season. This team is paid a premium for their selective picking expertise and their full-time employment helps them maintain stable income throughout the year.
HARVEST & POST-HARVEST
Colombia’s wetter, more humid climate makes producing Naturals more difficult, making their clean and fruity, repeatedly large volume Naturals an extraordinary find.
Much of their success is due to their innovative processing methods that make producing clean, large volume Naturals possible, no matter the weather.
Elmer and Juan Felipe use Brix (a measurement of sugar content) to ensure that only perfect ripe cherry – cherry with about 21% Brix – is processed.
After selective harvesting and sorting, cherry is sundried in parabolic driers for 5 days. Throughout this time, workers rake cherry frequently to ensure even drying. Then, cherry is dried in mechanical driers on low heat for an additional 3 days.
Juan Felipe and Elmer are constant innovators looking for new ways to highlight coffee flavors and improve each cup. This lot, Jardin 4, was dried with Lulo, a small orange fruit seldom seen outside Colombia that is bright and tart.
The coffee is milled at the Restrepo’s dry mill, called Invercafe, located in the town a few kilometers away from the farm.
ABOUT CALDAS REGION
Parts of Caldas are located in Eje Cafetero, the Colombian Coffee Growing Axis. Eje Cafetero was the first major coffee producing region in Colombia. For many years, the region held the distinction of being the most well-known and highly-sought-after Colombian coffee region. Tropical rainforest conditions, volcanic soil and a wealth of rivers and streams in Eje Cafetero make the area ideal for coffee growing, and Manizales is located at the heart of the Caldas department in Eje Cafetero.
Today, producers in Caldas are increasingly focused on high-quality coffee production. These producers have become common and well-known enough to earn an affectionate colloquial name in the region. They’re called juiciosos (literally: sensible/wise), which in this case means hard working and attentive to detail. In addition to finding ways to perfect existing processing methods, juiciosos are experimenting with new processing methods and planting new varieties of coffee.
COFFEE IN COLOMBIA
Colombia has been producing and exporting coffee renowned for their full body, bright acidity and rich aftertaste, since the early 19th century.
Colombia boasts a wide range of climates and geographic conditions that, in turn, produce their own unique flavors in coffee. This also means that harvest times can vary quite a bit. In fact, between all its different regions, Colombia produces fresh crop nearly all year round.
The increasing focus on the specialty industry is changing the way traders and farmers do business. It is becoming more common for farmers to isolate the highest quality beans in their lots to market separately. These higher-quality lots are often sold under specific brands or stories.
Besides its wide variety of cup profiles, Colombia has quickly expanded its certification options over the past 10 years. The most common certifications available are Fairtrade, Rainforest Alliance, UTZ and Organic.