In 1997, Jaime and Maria Azcarrunz bought a piece of land deep in the Las Yungas region which they called Finca Virgen de Copacabana.
Copacabana is the sacred Island of the Sun, in the middle of Lake Titicaca; The Copacabana estate farm is certified organic, 1400 to 1600 meters above sea level, uses the Penagos wet processing equipment and sun dries all their coffee on patio and African beds. Located 52 kilometers from Caranavi, on the skirts of the Condoriri mountains, Finca Virgen de Copacabana is one of the largest in the area with a perimeter of 250 hectares and its location is strategic for high altitude coffee production.
Welcome to my Table, here in the corner of this cafe. Today we’re sipping a cup of Bolivia Finca Virgen de Copacabana, from Krankies Coffee in Salem, North Carolina, courtesy of Craft Coffee. Feel free to pull up a chair.
region: Las Yungas, Bolivia
farm: Finca Virgen de Copacabana
producer: smallholder farmers
elevation: 1400 – 1600 meters above sea level
cultivars: Bourbon, Caturra
process: fully washed, patio dried
method: Hario V60
grind: 16, Preciso
coffee: 28 g
water: 425 mL
water temp: 202°
pour: 2:30 concentric pulse pour
Opening this bag of Bolivian beans, my nose is immediately greeted by sweet scents of peanut butter brittle and subtle dried fruits.
Taking my first few sips of the cup immediately post-brew, the coffee is immediately juicy with poignant flavors of craisin juice (raisin sweetness and cranberry tartness) that gushes over and bites at the tip and sides of the tongue, while honeysuckle and bittersweet dark cocoa powder lay down a riverbed for the juiciness to flow over; the coffee is really nicely layered that way. There’s even a nice tangy clementine note.
What I don’t really care for, though, is this sour malic acidity that is introduced as the cup begins cooling off; it provides another interesting dimension to the coffee for sure, but it’s just a bit sour for my taste. That acidity, though, does introduce another layer to this dense cup and I’m now picking up notes of trail mix (raisin, dates, peanuts, almond, milk chocolate), cane sugar, cardamom, cinnamon, and something of an unfortunate papery astringency in the finish.
Full body; winy mouthfeel; malic acidity; clean finish.
Bolivian coffees, I think, are vastly underrated and are too oft-overlooked. Even the most straightforward Bolivian coffees offer some really interesting flavor profiles.
The cup we had today, for example—the Bolivia Finca Virgen de Copacabana, from Krankies Coffee—had a densely layered, complexly flavored profile that was every bit as nuanced as and rivaled some of the more interesting coffees to come out of regions like, say, Guatemala or Brazil. It’s not a perfect coffee, but it’s one that clearly demonstrates what Bolivian coffees are capable of being.
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Andrew is a husband, father, dog lover, craft beverage enthusiast, content creator, and niche market Internet celebrity. Formerly of A Table in the Corner of the Cafe and The Pulitzer Project and contributor to Barista Magazine and Mental Floss, he’s been writing on the Internet for years.