In the heart of the Chocó Andin, one of the planet’s 7 biodiversity hotspots, the Las Tolas estate is the result of a project built with passion and a desire for excellence. Located in the Andean foothills at 1700m altitude, the estate has been managed by Arnaud Causse since 2004. Arnaud has planted coffee plants outside traditional growing zones, where the terroir enjoys a unique environment. Under the shade of wild service trees, banana trees and mango trees, the cherries ripen slowly in optimal conditions to enhance the aromatic potential after roasting.
Every year, at harvest time, the locals living near the plantation carefully select and collect the best cherries. The cherries are then placed in water baths to extract any unripe coffee beans. After this first stage, the parchments submerged in water for fermentation, after which they are dried naturally under the sun. This stage also allows the beans to preserve their aromatic quality.
Estate: Las Tolas
Varietal(s): Caturra, pacas
Altitude: 1700 masl
Owner: Arnaud Causse
You can buy this coffee from Bailies here
What we thought
Last week we had summer. It’s probably all gone now. One week in May! We didn’t even have time to eat lots of ice-cream…. vanilla, huge scoops of vanilla ice-cream. This coffee had sweet vanilla bouncing out of the bag like an ice-cream in the face. Sweet sweet lovely summer smell.
Today we took the coffee along to Middletown Coffee Co to add it into their Friday cupping table. Every Friday at 12.15 they set out a selection of coffees for a public cupping and, we’ve occasionally dropped in another coffee that we’ve been enjoying, just for fun.
Las Tolas really leapt out among some other very fine coffees today. The dark fruity flavours punched through and made a few of us say “ooooh” and “aahhhhhh” and “fruiiiiity.” That balance between fruity-ness and nuttiness is a treat. We had already made a few brews in the Chemex at home and were tasting lots of hazlenuts at first but a more balanced flavour as it cooled down.
This was a really delicious tasting coffee and, I think maybe the first coffee we have ever had from Ecuador. I think.
Go get some!