Flavor Notes: Caramel, Green Apple, Cherry
Washed Process - Medium Roast
This is a washed SHG grade microlot from producer Jose Mario Martinez’s farm /Finca El Pacayal/ in the Montecillos region of south-west Honduras. This lot was produced as part of a collaborative project with Beneficio San Vincente.
Jose Mario Martinez Liva is a small farmer from the community of San Jose de Los Andes, Santa Barbara department. Jose Mario’s father is a coffee producer, so he has grown up learning the intricacies of coffee cultivation his whole life. When he was just 10 years old, Jose Mario’s father gave him and his brother a small plot to grow their own coffee. They worked very hard, spending all their free time there even on Sundays. At the age of 15 he had to move away due to economic difficulties, but during this time he was able to save up enough to buy more land. This started out well but in 2009, Jose Mario lost most of his crop due to roya (leaf rust). While this was a huge setback, it also presented a fresh start. Jose Mario and his brother dedicated themselves to renovating the farm and planting more diverse varietals and have since moved into specialty production.
Finca El Pacayal is a 4.2ha farm situated at 1,580masl and planted with the varieties of Pacas, San Ramon, Typica, Caturra, Bourbon, and Ihcafe 90. This lot is 100% Pacas.
Ripe coffee cherries are pulped at the family beneficio (mill) and then dry fermented for an average of 19 hours. The coffee is then washed with plenty of clean water until the remaining mucilage has been removed. After washing the coffee is pre-dried on raised beds for around 4 hours during which time it is handpicked to remove defects. It is then taken to a solar drier/greenhouse where it is dried in the sun for an average of 12 days depending on the ambient conditions, during which it is constantly turned to ensure consistent drying & prevent mold or over-fermentation
This coffee comes from the village of San Jose de los Andes on Santa Barbara Mountain, a mountainous massif with an area of 121.3 km2 and a maximum height of 2750 meters above sea level, which is mostly a virgin forest reserve declared as a national park since 1987.
Most of the native people of the area began to grow coffee since the 1940s, mainly in the lower areas, although it was always a secondary crop. From the 1970s, coffee became the main crop in the area, promoted by the rise in prices at that time, with Bourbon being the most widespread varieties. Since then coffee has become the basis of the local economy for these communities, as well as an important cultural element.
The Montecillos region is notable for its high altitude and subsequently cool temperatures, which allow coffee cherries to mature slowly and develop increased complexity in the cup.