We truly didn't spend enough time in Guatemala this year. We arrived late Saturday night and have a 6am flight to San Jose, Costa Rica Wednesday morning. These buying trips are generally quick, but this was the quickest in and out we've ever done. We ultimately achieved what we wanted to, but didn't get to spend a ton of time doing so.
We cupped about 140 samples of coffee and dwindled that down to about 15 that we were keen on! We're really happy with the overall coffees this season. Everything from Guatemala is tasting lusciously sweet. They're overall yield is down, but the weather has been solid and that's lead to good preparations for the plant, good ripening of the cherry and lots of sugars developed surrounding the seeds (beans).
We'll bring home Santa Ana la Huerta - detailed in the previous blog post, Buena Vista, Hunapu, Carmona de Pulcal and a new offering from a female producer in Huehuetenango named Zoila Teresa Aguilar.
Buena Vista is a farm in the Antigua area that we've now purchased from each of our four trips to Guatemala. We were thrilled with the Villasarchi and how that's tasting this season - you'll like it too!
Hunapu is a community project that is in and around Antigua. We've focused our purchases to the township of Doroteo Gomez. A small town we visited last season. These small farms are slightly higher altitude than other parts of the Hunapu project and we found the acid was a little more refined and the sweetness, like the other offerings, was superb!
Carmona de Pulcal will be featured on our menu for a second straight season. This is an estate owned by Maria Zelaya Aguirre and she has vast amounts of land dedicated to coffee as well as dairy pastures. This year we spent an afternoon and were taught how to milk a cow by hand. They people working there make it look easy and it's truly not!
We drove through the coffee plants and saw the vast amounts of Bourbon and scatterings of Villasarchi and Caturra, with a tiny plot of Geisha and Maragogype. There's some pruning and maintenance that needs to be done throughout the farm, but nonetheless the coffee had great structure and elegant presence.
The coffee we're perhaps most excited about is from Zoila Teresa Aguilar in Los Palomas, Huehuetenango - an area we did not visit as it's 5+ hours away. This region is famed for its coffee production and we've been keen to have an offering from here on our menu since we began sourcing coffee. Zoila's coffee is complex and fruity, with raspberry, strawberry tones, loads of sweetness, big creamy body and a long lasting finish. We're told that her husband moved to the US for work, and she's stayed behind to raise their children while maintaining their small coffee production. Pretty amazing. We're keen to visit, hopefully next season. Hopefully you're keen to try her coffee!
Bedtime for me. It's 10pm now and we need to be at the airport no later than 4am for this 6am flight. Gross. We'll go straight into cupping tomorrow in Costa Rica, so that's exciting :)
Thanks for reading.