Name: La Yerba
Region: La Yerba
Varietal: Bourbon || Caturra || Mondo Novo
Process: Natural Process
Altitude: 845 MASL
Flavor Notes: Mexican Mocha / Cookie Butter / Golden Raisin
The town of La Yerba is a small community on the northern side of the San Juan Volcano. The community was originally founded under the name of El Astal, but in 1969 the town was relocated to border a highway as a newly formed Ejido and was named La Yerba. To this day the community remains integrated by 35 Ejidatarios with a total of 786 inhabitants; 383 women and 403 men, according to the census of INEGI, 2013. The economy of La Yerba is tied to its two most important crops, coffee, and avocados. With one harvest immediately following the other, there are only a few months a year where farmers have guaranteed income. By working with San Cristobal and CAFESUMEX, farmers receive a price adjustment based on the quality and sale price 4 to 6 months after the harvest of their coffee, in addition to the price they receive for their coffee in cherry form.
As a newly formed society, ASTAL has not had the chance to build a wet mill. The coffee they produce is instead processed as a dried natural. Instead of removing the pulp and mucilage from the coffee cherries, the coffee is only rinsed off then immediately set out to dry while still in cherry form. This process is very similar to drying a grape into a raisin. By allowing the coffee to dry as whole cherries, many flavors and characteristics are imparted onto the coffee bean. Naturally processed coffees are known to have a heavier mouthfeel, lower acidity, and distinct fruity characteristics. Ms. Andrea Flores De La O, the president of ASTAL, provides a system of premiums for coffee produced by women, which has enabled the society’s eight female members to get their coffee to market. La Yerba Womens Afrutado is one of those coffees.