Cusco beans are harvested at altitudes that range from about 400 to 1200 meters above sea level from peru
The zone in Cuzco where cacao was traditionally from is the Urubamba valley...a very special valley. This is the main valley where the Incas would come from the Andes to reach the jungle... this was their route into the jungle. It was also where they would meet the natives of the jungle for trade purposes. (This is also the Valley where the last Incan emperor (Manco Inca) fled to and hid when the conquistadors invaded Peru)
It typically has a high diverse fruit flavour (tropical, some citric and red fruits) and some floral profiles, higher % of fat than usual, and lower % of tannins.
The cacao undergoes a very well controlled box fermentation, usually 4-5 days in length with rotation of the beans done every day after the first 2 days.
The cacao then gets transferred to mounds – stirring the mounds for 2-4 days depending on how much sun exposure there is, then the mounds get dispersed over the tarped floor or drying shelves to finish drying. Total drying is typically 7 days... but may be longer or shorter depending on the weather. (If there are rains it gets covered).
We work directly with a couple of cooperatives of Urubamba valley (mainly Alto Urubamba)...we have been working with these cooperatives for a long time (many years). They are very established, have a good relationship with their farming members