“Departement Nariño (one of the 32 divided by the Republic of Colombia) is located in the southwest of the country, just above the equator and on the border with Ecuador. The region is strikingly mountainous and boasts no less than five volcanoes: Chiles (4 718 meters) , Cumbal (4,764 meters), Azufral (4,070 meters), Doña Juana (4,250 meters) and Galeras (4,276 meters) This coffee was actually grown on the slopes of the latter: Galeras.
Galeras, like a volcano, has an interesting peculiarity: it was active for at least a million years before going through a period of 10 years of dormancy until 1988, when it became active again. It lies above the capital of the Pasto region and coffee is grown on all the surrounding slopes, where the soil draws nutrients from volcanic compounds that have formed over time.
Coffee is grown at altitudes that reach 2,300 meters, which is one of the highest in the world in which coffee is grown. The high altitude of the cultivation allows the slow development of the coffee beans, which gives the profile of the Galeras cup its unique properties.
The producers in this region are mostly small farmers who manage their own self-sufficient wet mills and terraces (open or covered) for drying. Each family does the harvest itself – mostly with the help of neighbors. After harvesting the red and ripe cherries, it is pulped using a hand-held pulper on the family farm (usually located near the main building). The waste from this process will later be used as a natural fertilizer for coffee trees. Depending on the conditions, the fermentation can be between 12 and 48 hours. Some manufacturers add several layers of wet parchment over a period of days, which is expected to complete the fermentation process and the final cup profile. Once the fermentation is complete, the coffee is washed 2-4 times and then transferred to open terraces or greenhouses to dry in the sun. Fortunately, Nariño is blessed with some of the best drying conditions in the country thanks to the microclimate and high altitude of the region, which provide lower relative humidity, more wind and more sunny days than other parts of the country. “