San Vicente Yogondoy: Something Only Oaxaca Can Offer

We’re spotlighting Oaxaca region San Vicente Yogondoy, an area that showcases not only some of Oaxaca’s best quality but also incredible productivity. 

Coffees from here smell and taste like amber honey, featuring a subtle florality, grape and purple fruits, and a dried fruit undertone. They’re light-bodied and refreshing even when hot, with a blended citric, tartaric, and malic complex yet delicate acidity. These are coffees with such an easy-to-grasp widespread appeal: dark roast lovers who don’t get specialty will enjoy them, while the most seasoned coffee pros will notice the distinct nuances of their profile. The incredibly lush green environment and the Pluma variety come together in Yogondoy to yield something truly unique and special that only Oaxaca can offer. On the cupping table, the farm-to-farm consistency is so notable that time and time again we choose to offer these coffees in community ID form rather than separating—it’s not because quality isn’t high enough, it’s that the quality is so universal.

Because the farms are so remote and steep, all cherry is picked by hand and transported by foot and mule over long distances, often left overnight before processing can happen, leading to extended time between picking and depulping. This offers a de facto extended fermentation before coffees hit the open-air drying stage, which absolutely adds to their complexity, even as they retain the subtle elegance that makes Oaxaca coffees some of the finest in the world. 

Unlike most of Oaxaca, where coffee yields run on a biennial cycle, Yogondoy’s productivity has benefited from recent farm renovations and is increasing every year. The productivity per hectare here is sometimes as much as double surrounding areas. A lush, densely forested community in the Sierra Sur region of Oaxaca in the district of Pochutla, Yogondoy’s steep slopes harbor coffee under a thick canopy of native shade facing the Pacific Ocean to the south and ensconced in its cool mists. 

The Pluma variety, a native Typica mutation with a superb cup profile, thrives here as it has for over 80 years. In this area, we see cherries of all colors from red to yellow to purple. The surrounding flora is part of that success. Yogondoy producers use a diverse array of native trees such as Cuachepil, Cuil, and avocado, which offer not only shade but also fertilizer, food, medicine, construction materials, and water retention. On top of their passion for forest conservation, the farmers of Yogondoy (which means River of Bees in native Zapotec language) also keep bees for honey and pollination, adding to the richness of the landscape. 

Our work in this area started off with a very small group, who, sick of selling their coffee for subpar prices to coyotes and a single cooperative that was dominant at the time, sought a more stable and profitable dynamic. We tried our first samples here almost a decade ago, and since then we’ve built a strong bond with more and more of Yogondoy’s producers, helping them access better prices and more competitive markets. The relationship is built on a foundation of trust and traceability. 

Interested in sourcing coffee with us? Reach out at info@redfoxcoffeemerchants.comTo learn more about our work, check out our journal and follow us on Instagram @redfoxcoffeemerchants, Twitter @redfoxcoffeeSpotify, and YouTube.

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