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Costa Rica

$90.75 - $17.00



Due to COVID-19 and high order volumes, we cannot guarantee requests for ground coffee and shipments may be delayed.

PRODUCER Coope Libertad of Higuerones
REGION Central Valley, Costa Rica
VARIETY Caturra, Catuaí, Obatá, Marsellesa
ALTITUDE 1200 meters
TASTES LIKE Silky nougat and mango
PACKAGE 12 oz or 2 lb whole bean

Weeks before Covid 19 hit, Cartel had been able to travel with their importing partner, Mercanta, to Costa Rica on a sourcing trip. We were able to make some pretty awesome connections with some cool producers down there, but we will unfortunately not see most of the coffees we earmarked on that trip due to our loss of revenue and loss of volume from the pandemic. That is the sad news. The good news is we do still have this one washed lot from Costa Rica which is especially exciting because it is one of the places we got to do a full farm and processing tour, participate in a cupping, and spend about a half a day asking too many questions but getting them all answered, graciously.

Costa Rica is big on processing experiments and they are big on high-end single varieties. One thing we learned is that Costa Rica does very little ‘wet fermentation’ washing. Most ‘fully washed’ coffees there are produced using a mechanical process that bypasses the fermentation stage. This is also very common in Colombia, but has become less popular on the specialty side there. The reasons Costa Rican producers do this are varied. Some feel it is best for the environment because it is a way to save water consumption. Others feel it is much easier to control variables when fermentation is not a factor. Both of these are valid and there are some amazing expressions of mechanically washed coffee that we tasted, even though we tend to prefer wet fermentation (thanks to what our friends in Colombia have taught us).

Coope Libertad, where this Matinilla lot comes from, has decided to stay the course with wet fermentation. In fact, it was the only place we saw on the whole trip (and we visited many mills in several regions) still doing any wet fermentation. Libertad uses complex water reclamation systems to ensure their adherence to this process is not a burden on the environment. It makes things a bit more challenging, but they have decided it is the most appropriate way to meet the demands of both quality and environmental responsibility. Another practice we witnessed there was a very organized conversion of coffee waste (all the leftover fruit mucilage) into compost. When the coop members drop off coffee, they pick up a load of compost on their way out (at least that was how I understood it!) so there is a healthy cycle of organic material being put back into the farms where it originates.