|Tasting Notes||Sugar Cane, Almond, White Grape|
|Country of Origin||Guatemala|
|Altitude Grown||1600-2200 MASL|
|Variety||Bourbon, Catimor, Caturra, Maragogype, Pache|
|Certifications||Fair Trade & Organic|
Guatemalan coffee from the Huehuetenango region is a true delight for coffee lovers. This region is renowned for producing some of the best coffees in Latin America, thanks to its unique combination of climate, altitude, water sources, and traditional coffee varieties.
The coffee is a medium roast, which brings out its complex and nuanced flavor profile. On the nose, you'll detect hints of sugar cane, which give the coffee a sweet and slightly earthy aroma. As you take a sip, you'll notice notes of almond, which add a nutty, almost buttery flavor to the coffee. Finally, there's a delicate hint of white grape, which rounds out the flavor with a touch of fruitiness.
This coffee is a testament to the rich diversity of the Huehuetenango region, and the care and expertise of the farmers who grow and harvest it. It's perfect for anyone who appreciates a high-quality cup of coffee with a unique and nuanced flavor profile. Whether you enjoy it as a morning pick-me-up or an afternoon treat, Guatemalan coffee from the Huehuetenango region is sure to please.
Huehuetenango is located in Western Guatemala bordering Mexico. It is extremely diverse and known for producing some of the best coffees in Latin America due to its climate, altitude, water sources, and traditional varieties.
Asociación de Productores de Café Diferenciados y Especiales de Guatemala (ASPROCDEGUA) is a producing organization that was founded by a master cupper named Noe Quintero, with whom our green-coffee buyer Piero Cristiani has worked since his first year on the sourcing team. There are 664 contributing members, 394 of whom have organic certification. The producing members own small farms, an average of 2 hectares each, on which they plant coffee as well as other crops for diversification, including bananas, citrus fruit like oranges and lemons, avocado, guava, and cassava.
The organization offers its members access to technical assistance and routinely provides services such as soil analysis, test farms, and social projects based on food security, education, and nutrition. The smallholders of ASPROCDEGUA are from several different municipalities within the area, including San Marcos, Cuilco, Colotenango, Santa Bárbara, San Sebastián Huehuetenango, Sipacapa, San Antonio Huisa, Cantinil Union, San Pedro Necta, Todos Santos, and Concepción Huista
The Washed process varies greatly across the growing regions of Guatemala due in large part to the different terroir and terrain that exists from place to place there, but for the most part the primary difference in style is in the length of time that the coffee is allowe to ferment. Generally speaking, coffee is picked ripe and depulped the same or the following day, then allowed to ferment for anywhere between 12–48 hours, depending on the climate. The coffee is then washed clean of its mucilage and spread on patios or raised beds to dry.
A large percentage of Guatemala’s population, and therefore also the coffee sector, identify with one of more than 20 officially recognized indigenous groups. Most farmers are smallholders who are either working independently of one another, loosely associated by proximity and cultural ties, or formally affiliated in cooperative associations.
In 1960, coffee growers developed their own union, which has since become the national coffee institute Anacafé (Asosiación Nacional del Café), which is a research center, marketing agent, and financial organization that provides loans and offers support to growers throughout the various regions.
Starting in 2012 and lasting for several years, an outbreak of coffee-leaf rust proved a tremendous obstacle to coffee production in the country, reducing yields by as much as 25%, and causing the government to declare a state of emergency. Farmers attempted a combination of chemical and organic treatments, intensely targeted pruning, reduction of shade plants, and replacing susceptible varieties like Bourbon, Caturra, and Catuai with more leaf-rust-resistant ones. Anacafé has been working closely with World Coffee Research on variety trials and research that will hopefully result in future protection and prevention of similar outbreaks, as well as provide more productive harvests for the smallholder farmers.
*origin photos and some portion of the description were used with permission thanks to Cafe Imports