Guatemala –Finca santa clara
Farm : Finca Santa Clara
Varietal(s): 100% Bourbon
Processing: Fully washed & dried in greenhouses
Altitude: 1,600 to 1,830 metres above sea level
Owner: Ricardo Zelaya and family
Region: Antigua Valley
Total size of farm: 115 hectares
Area under coffee: 100 hectares
Prizes: Guatemala COE: #6, 2012; #18, 2010;
#21, 2009; #3, 2001
This 100% Bourbon coffee has been handpicked by specia l pickers employed (and paid higher wages) particularly for their skill at selecting only the ripest and most perfect cherries. The method of‘ special’ picking is one that the Zelayas have used to great effect in the lots that they submit to the Cup of Excellence competition. They’ve recently begun to expand their offerings of lots, such as this one, that utilize the same method of picking.
The Zelaya family is passionately committed to both quality and sustainability. The family’s farms are scrupulously well-managed right from the careful selection of varietals planted, to the close supervision of the dry and wet mills. The coffee is shade grown, which protects the plants from direct sunlight, maintains soil health, and provides an important habitat for birds and insect life. The family’s mills are also ecofriendly and feature sedimentation tanks that prevent pollution of the local river systems.
Ricardo has been committed to renovation, investigative plantings and experimentation in processing from the very beginning. He produces microlots according to varietal and processing method (they do honey and natural processing as well as fully washed coffees, such as this lot). He is exceptionally forward looking with regards to the varieties of coffee cultivated, and he has also has established different plots of less usual varietals, such as Geisha and Pacamara, which will enable him to expand microlot offerings in the future. He is constructing a second greenhouse to dry larger volumes of coffee, as this type of drying improves the quality of the cup, and he is building a brand new dry mill (on site, with much of the machines being built by hand), which will give him better control over the final processing and sorting of his coffees.