Altitude: 3,500-4,500 feet
Varietal: Bourbon, Typica and Mundo Novo
Process: Washed, sun-dried
Our Guatemala Antigua is grown in rolling volcanic foothills around 3,500 – 4,500 feet above sea level. The microclimate is tropical and humid, and combined with rich clay-like soils, provides the ideal conditions for a range of varietals such as Bourbon, Typica and Mundo Novo. The farm also cultivates cardamom, macadamia nuts, plantain and banana, which is often used as a shade crop for the coffee bushes. However, much of the farm is also dedicated to a forestry preserve, where endangered trees are grown, providing a protected environment for wildlife and helping to prevent soil erosion on the steeper slopes.The farm, operated by the Echeverria family, hires mostly local labor which generates jobs for people in the nearby town. Finca Ceylan has contributed to community development with new houses, drinkable water and education centers for its employees and their children. The farm maintains the river basin and the natural vegetation that grows nearby, and many water sources have been protected. Hunting and fishing is prohibited to conserve natural fauna and flora, and the water used in the wet mill is filtered through oxidation tanks to avoid contaminating river water.This coffee is also a Smithsonian Migratory Bird-Friendly Coffee. What all this means is that it is grown and harvested on farms that do their work according to a specific set of guidlines that guarantee that they are not destroying the rain forests and they are not destroying migratory bird populations and habitats. Both of these things are possible in large part because of the fact that coffee grows better in the shade. Shade grown coffee develops slower, thereby giving you a harder and more flavorful bean. The farm originally planted banana trees to provided that coveted shade for the coffee plants. They soon realized that they could harvest and sell the bananas as well. This has added to the farms ability to generate income, and thereby produce even better coffee (with happier workers).
The Ceylan farm is located in the mountainous Atitlan region. Atitlan coffees tend to be more relaxed than Huehuetenango coffees, but no less tasty. The flavor profile is similar – creamy chocolate, nice complexity to the body, some lemon and floral accents. Guatemalan coffee tends to be the most complex of all Central & South American coffees, which is why we like them so much. This Ceylan coffee has more citrus notes than the Huehuetenango and the chocolate is more cocoa than milk chocolate.