What makes this coffee so special | Takesi Geisha
It is a core value for us to maintain a close relationship with farmers we collaborate with. Normally we would be in Bolivia right around this time visiting Mariana Iturralde and her father, Carlos. As the situation with Covid has flared up yet again and started a second wave, we have stayed in touch with the owners of Finca Takesi via text and phone calls instead. 
The view from Finca Takesi
25.11.2020Casper Rasmussen

This coffee is without a doubt the best coffee we have ever tasted. And why is that? What is the secret, behind these delicious beans? 

Well, several factors make up for this fine craftmanship; dedicated farming, rich humus soil, and the perfect location. 

It is far down from here ...

Taking coffee to new heights

Never before has coffee been cultivated at these heights in the Bolivian Andes. Up to 2.5 kilometers above sea level, the oxygen level is very low, and the temperature has dropped significantly. At first thought, this doesn’t come across as the best place to grow coffee. However, it turned out that the Iturralde family’s land was a small sweet spot with the perfect conditions. 

At this elevation, everything grows slower, which is a plus if you are producing coffee. A long and slow ripening contributes to an incredible intensity and delicate acidity which we find in this coffee, along with a distinct complexity and a wave of fleeting aromas.

The leaves feels like rubber and are super thick

Humus Soil

What really sets Takesi apart is the layer of 1.5 m of humus (partially decomposed organic matter) on the mountainsides. This very unique soil gives very natural nourishment to the coffee trees and maybe the reason why the coffee leaves are so thick.

Although the soil is rich, higher parts of the farm lack boron which is balanced out by applying lime (calcium) mixed with 8-10 percent of boron. Mariana tells us, that the plants are improving, but »at an altitude of 2,300 – 2,400 masl coffee plants are always suffering.«

The lime has another purpose as well. Finca Takesi has very high levels of aluminum saturation. The aluminum saturation prevents coffee plants from eating. As Mariana puts it, »it is like having a delicious plate of food in front of you, and your mouth is sewn up.« When adding lime the aluminum level is controlled and the coffee plant can ‘eat’. 

Small, neat setup for washing the coffee including raised beds

Processing at the peak of the farm 

After the coffee is washed, the beans are spread onto raised beds for 24 hours. Here, they will be drip-drying before going into the rotating mechanical dryer. 

It is also where the workers of Takesi QC the coffee by hand and sort out the coffee that doesn’t meet their high-quality standards. 

Rotating mechanical dryer

The coffee will then dry in the mechanical dryer. To imitate how coffee naturally would dry in the old days in Bolivia, the dryer is only used during daytime and is set to 40 degrees Celsius. Back then, the coffee would dry under the sun. This step will take up to 4-6 days depending on the weather. 

Takesi Geisha is simultaneously extremely elegant yet super rich. The aromas are intense and at the same time incredibly clean and elegant. This is what makes this coffee so special. 

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