Cup of Excellence #15 Peru
- March 2020
- Written by : Jay Cunningham
Sales Executive / Green Coffee Buyer
Peru is a vast and beautiful country that has all the elements for high quality coffee: soaring elevations, amazing soils and great varietals. Indeed, Peru produces tons of amazing coffees, but most of them are bulked into huge lots and mixed into blends, meaning the delicious and remarkable cup quality of many small farms is lost forever.
The Cup of Excellence applies an extraordinary amount of scrutiny to coffee that most buyers and companies simply cannot afford to invest in. The process is methodical and exacting, utilizing all the resources available in the vibrant and growing specialty coffee sector. The coffees are cupped and re-cupped many times, first by a national jury, and then by an international panel. The winning lots eventually auctioned off, often at very high prices, with the majority of the premiums going directly to the producer.
Our Direct Trade model is built around the same ideas as the Cup of Excellence: isolate exemplary lots, reward the farmers who produce them, and celebrate the results of all that careful and intentional work, all with the goal of finding the very best coffees from any given country. In its third year in Peru, the CoE competition showcased a remarkable array of coffees from every region, with a surprising range of complex flavors.
One of my favorite coffees was from Finca La Perla, grown by a farmer named Rafaél Arévalo Apolínar. The coffee was notable for its intense fruity sweetness and crisp acidity.