Do you like it on the dark side? If so, this coffee is one that is roasted dark, but not too dark because we still want you to taste the beans and not just the roast flavours. A coffee with a big body and good acidity, with a hint of orange filtering through the brown sugar and nutty flavours. Above all, a well-rounded, top-quality espresso.
Leal is one of our best-selling coffees. To be able to offer you this roast all year round, we had to source more farmers for it. We did not want to blend the beans of the different farmers, we want you to know the one and only farmer who is behind your cup.
All three farmers: Amanda, Jonny and Alejandro are from the same mountain region in Colombia (Anserma) and use the same varietal of beans. The differences are so marginal that it is not recognizable in your cup.
Luz Amanda Ospina
To find a small coffee farm like Amanda, you need to get lucky! This is a real gem of a speciality coffee, grown in the remote mountains of Anserma, Colombia. Amanda Ospina and her husband Horacio manage the farm, which was bought from Horacio’s brother in 1979. The couple have two daughters and two sons: one of the sons helps out on the farm; the other children are either at school or university. Since Amanda suffers from back problems, Horacio takes care of all the cleaning work, both inside and outside, as well as doing all the gardening too.
During the main harvesting season, the family employs four coffee pickers. Amanda recently invested in a small indoor drying facility so that during the longer rainy periods they can still dry their coffee and not be so reliant on dry weather. As a coffee alternative, Amanda and Horacio also farm plantain trees for extra income.
Amanda’s plantations are so steep that at first, we thought they had to use ropes to secure themselves when picking some of the harder-to-reach cherries. Horacio and Amanda just laughed – it seems that Colombians are better climbers than Swissies!
If you haven’t yet experienced Colombian hospitality, you will be surprised to know that what was meant as a business visit to the Melo family farm turned into a big family lunch with us “gringos” trying their local delicacies.
Jonny Melo is one of the sons of Nelson Melo, born in Samaniego, Colombia. Nelson moved to the Caldas region, 900km away from his origin, to escape the constant threats of armed conflicts in that region. With his wife Maria Bercelia Ortega, he bought Hacienda Bellavista. Jonny has always helped his father with the farm. Some years ago, Nelson rewarded him with a piece of land where he could grow his own beans. That, we must say, is a great honour for a young coffee grower. Jonny took this opportunity with commitment and enthusiasm and in his short time as an individual coffee grower, has received two awards.
We believe that a farmer’s energy somehow makes it to his beans and travels all the way to the cup that you drink. And if this energy thing is true, Alejandro Martinez’s fiery personality contributes to making our Leal so special (and well, strong!).
He was born in Anserma, in the Caldas region of Colombia, the son of a coffee grower. His father, Esain Martinez bought their farm in 1974 and passed it on to Alejandro. It truly is a family affair: while his sons work the land, Alejandro’s daughter Luz Angela represents them at Coperativa de Caficultores and has been entering high-quality coffee competitions. Luz has already won such contests once, while Alejandro has two awards for their beans.
You might notice Alejandro’s beans are slightly bigger than the rest of our Anserma farmers. That’s Alejandro’s signature, as a result of the addition of nitrogen to the soil. A study done on his farm indicated the need to enrich the soil for better crops, so nitrogen became their thing.
Another special characteristic of these beans is the anaerobic (oxygen-free) fermentation process. It is a new post-harvesting method where the coffee is processed in a fully sealed and oxygen-deprived fermentation tank. This controlled process basically allows different microorganisms to act in the water/sugar combination. The result is a very unique flavour that is often not found in the regular fermentation process.