Costa Rica Herbazu Honey Process 2012


Bean name Costa Rica Herbazu Honey Process 2012
Country Costa Rica
Region Occidental Valley
Other info Varietal: Villa Sarchi


This is another of our coffees from Costa Rica, and an old favourite that's returning after a couple of years' break.

Costa Rica Herbazu is a honey processed coffee from the Narajo region of Costa Rica, and it is not a million miles from the amazing and lovely Licho. Like Licho, this is a family-run concern. It consists of 13 micro farms, owned by 5 brothers and 8 sisters who all have a say in the running and development of this farm/mill. I was lucky enough to visit Herbazu and meet some of the family in February 2011.

The farm is situated around 1500 to 1600 metres above sea level in the west valley of Costa Rica. It is planted with the Villa Sarchi varietal, and made up with some smaller lots of 'Kenya' Geisha and Catuai. The farm uses the 'honeyed method', this is where the cherry is removed from the seed without water so all the mucilage is stuck to the seed. It's then placed in the sun to dry, but it needs to be turned during that drying process. It's a complex process that I won't go in to here, but it's very interesting and I think it has a bearing on the flavour.

Now you may see this coffee around some other roasters in Europe, and that's because this farm does amazing things and lots of people want to be part of it. I was lucky enough to cup nearly 30 different lots of coffee from this farm (different days' picking, different parts of the farms, different honeys of red and yellow), and this one shone head shoulders and a little tippie-toes above them all. On a blind cupping table of over 250 coffees this was one of my top three; it was super special, and I hope you are going to feel the same about it too.

In the cup expect huge toffee, sticky sweet toffee, but then there's a blast of lemon acidity (sweet lemons) before the toffee marches back with a huge hit of Nutella chocolate spread. In espresso there is a hint of candy floss too. Super sweet coffee.

Farm: Herbazú

Varietal: Villa Sarchí

Processing: Honey Process

Altitude: 1,500 -1600 metres above sea level

Owner: Hermanos Barrantes Zuñiga

City: Lourdes de Naranjo

Region: Occidental Valley

Roasting Information:
Medium to medium dark roast. My preference is just into second crack, first few pops then drop.

"Quick Look" Guide:
Toffee, sweet lemons, Nutella chocolate spread, candyfloss.

Good Filter: Yes, Good Espresso: Yes

Cupping notes

Clean cup 7/8
Sweetness 8/8
Acidity 7/8
Mouthfeel 7/8
Flavour 7/8
Aftertaste 7/8
Balance 7/8
Overall 7/8
Correction +36
Total 93

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