||Nicaragua Limoncillo Pacamara Pulped Natural 2012
We first bought from this farm back in 2007, in a buying group in the Cup of Excellence. From the first time I cupped this coffee, I loved it and it was one I had to get. It was only after the auction closed that I found out it was owned by the father of two brothers in Nicaragua who are probably the only people I know from the country, and are good friends of mine.
The following year I visited the farm with our importers and spent the whole trip begging them to bring the coffee from it in for us. Eventually they caved in and kindly did this for us. This worked well for two years. But last year we received an email saying that the importers were not going to be buying the coffee any more, for reasons other than the cup quality.
This led to some frantic phone calls and some thorough searching of the back of the sofa for enough loose change to fund buying 12 months' worth of coffee in one go. Many obstacles were in the way of doing this deal, but luckily we were able to pull all the strings together with so little time.
This year we had time to plan, and have expanded what we bring in from the farm.
So the upside of all of this is that we are proud to announce that Limoncillo is part of our direct trade program and I see it as a symbol of how Has Bean's buying program has developed, and how we are developing as a roastery. From Cup of Excellence, to long term relationship, to a direct relationship.
The farm is located in Matagalpa and is a huge 171 hectares. It's an amazing location with 9 waterfalls within the farm. It's owned by the Mieresch family, whom as I have already said are good friends, and are also well respected producers in Nicaragua, known for their experimental processing, varietal work, and exceptional coffee.
The fact that the family are friends help us drill down into the details of what they do for the people who work for them, and continues to prove to me that good people grow good coffee.
• The employers pay their staff 30% more than what is typical minimum wage, as well as:
• Provide free housing for 60 families on their farms;
• Provide free electricity and running water for their homes;
• Provide free food for all workers;
• Have free day care facilities for families to use;
• Provide free health care facilities on the farms;
• Employee on-site teachers who educate their staff and teach other skills, such as pottery and weaving.
The goal is to help staff diversify their skills. The teachers are also paid twice the wages they would receive in the cities.
This is a Pacamara varietal coffee. Pacamaras are a little crazy on the cupping table. Add to that the fact that it's a pulped natural (lots of them are washed, lots of them are natural), and this just adds to its complexity.
This was the coffee used by Colin Harmon from Ireland who finished 3rd in the World Barista Championships this year: no mean feat.
But all that is fine. In the cup it has a wonderful sugar-like sweetness; think candy floss and spun sugar, but then with a lovely mango acidity and an amazing creamy mouthfeel. It's just all round delicious.
Farm: El Limoncillo
Farmer: Dr Erwin Mierisch
Farm Size: 171.00 Hectares
Coffee growing area: 109.00 Hectares
Altitude: 1200 masl
Processing System: Pulped Natural
Medium dark roast. It will take a little more roast than standard, just into second and drop.
"Quick Look" Guide:
Sugar sweetness, candy floss, mango, creamy, delicious.
Good Filter: Yes, Good Espresso: Yes
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