Nelson is the second oldest son of Benjamín Vallecillo. We have been working with Benjamin since 2011 and until this year, we had been blending the small amount from Nelson with Benjamin’s coffee. Nelson’s coffee has impressed me since day one, but this was the first year he produced enough volume to bring it in as its own lot. It always tends to stand out on the cupping table with tropical notes, crisp acidity and sweetness.
The growing conditions are nearly perfect for producing top notch coffee – his farm is high, over 1800m in elevation and his maturation is very slow as a result. The way his land slopes, he also benefits from some wind and cold protection, which is crucial at this elevation.
Nelson grows Yellow Catuaí, which, in my opinion, almost always outperforms Red Catuaí. At this elevation, the plants seem happy and healthy. I have liked how the variety performs on Nelson’s farm so much that we have made plans to also plant some Yellow Catuaí on our farm.
Nelson dries the coffee on raised beds using shaded parabolic dryers, based on a design we introduced to Benjamín back in 2012. This type of dryer greatly slows down the drying time, preventing damage to the bean and prolonging the coffee’s shelf life.
Of course, this green was frozen immediately on arrival in Calgary, to preserve freshness.