As soon as we were on the way, our guide German got the conversation started. The coffee farm is located at approximately 2 hours driving from Medellin, but thanks to the cosy atmosphere in the bus it felt like the ride was much shorter. On the way there we had a second introduction; this time with the mountainous terrain of Antioquia, you could tell we were not so used to it as we were scared at every turn the driver easily made while laughing. Arriving at the farm we were welcomed by Don Octavio and his warm family and the beautiful view their house offers. If you ever wanted to have a nice dinner with all your friends and family, this is probably the kind of place you would do it. We were welcomed with a nice cup of fresh coffee before we were taken up the hill to see the coffee plants, by our guide; the son of Don Octavio.
A Brilliant Idea
The family owns and works on the land for .. generations, but Don Octavio is the one that made the most changes and made the farm into what it is today. Most Colombian coffee farms are (almost painfully) inefficient, a lot of daily activities are done the same way as the old times; with a basket on their back the employees of the farm harvest the coffee beans by hand, and when their basket is full they have to carry it all the way down: back to the farm (it has to be said though that the Colombian mountainous area is not very cooperative in making it easy to grow and harvest crop). However Don Octavio found an ingenious way to relieve his workers of this inefficient task, by installing a pipeline that leads from the top of the mountain to his house. Now his workers could simply empty their basket in the pipeline and all the coffee would be gathered in a shed next to the house. Brilliant!
Time for Coffee!
Now that we had seen how the coffee is grown and harvested, it was time to see how it was made into the coffee that we know and love to drink! We witnessed how the coffee was roasted and were told that the time of roasting varies on taste and differs in each country. After seeing with our own eyes the whole process from planting to roasting of coffee it was time for the best part of the tour: Tasting the coffee! We received several cups of coffee each with a different strength and different way of preparing. We were also taught that apparently real coffee connoisseurs taste coffee by slurping it. It was not long before everyone was slurping and enjoying the coffee we had produced ourselves.
If you want to experience the way coffee is made in Colombia, check out our Destinations page for similar tours!