Even the best producers will not produce 100% of their harvest as micro-lots, we all know this. As such, it’s important for us to find ways to support our producers across all ranges of qualities: this SHG Special is a blend comprised of coffees from Luis Alberto’s farms, as well as five other producers from the following regions: Dipilto, Jinotega, and Matagalpa, in Nicaragua, with farms ranging from 1,000 – 1,500 m.a.s.l.
The producers deliver the wet parchment (a blend of various varieties, Caturra being the main one) to Beneficio Las Segovias to be dried on the patio for between 15-21 days (different compared to the average patio-dried coffee in Nicaragua which takes only 5-7 days). Each lot is individually cupped before being included in the final lot and whilst they might not make the cut for micro-lots, they are a beautiful representation of a Classic Washed Nicaraguan coffee.
The Coffee Quest has been sourcing coffee in Nicaragua for approximately 8 years. However, it wasn’t until 6 years ago that we met Luis Alberto; a producer who is truly exemplary in his craft.
Nicaragua feels like the land of the big beans, with probably more Pacamara, Maragogype, and Maracaturra planted here than in any other country in the world; the producers seem happy with the production, quality, and price that it fetches. However, the ones we cupped when we started sourcing here were all really nice, but lacking in their potential… Until we had the opportunity to cup a table with Luis Alberto at Beneficio Las Segovias.
But we didn’t just taste his “offerings”, the first thing he said to me was: “Aren’t you concerned about the water your clients are using?”. He then proceeded to line up a table of 5 coffees, two cups each. One cup was soft water and one cup was really hard water. The purpose was to show me how much of an effect the water can have on a coffee; THIS was his mode of thinking, and at that point, before even tasting his coffee, I knew we had found our partner in Nicaragua.
His specialty lies in the production of Honeys and Naturals and as much as we’d love to add some Washed lots of his to the menu, we support buying coffees that offer the best potential for quality and price for the producer. Every year, we head down to Nicaragua to visit Luis Alberto, but again, not to cup his offerings, but generally to be schooled in the way he thinks and the way we are not but should be thinking.
One unique factor about these coffees is that while the majority of Luis Albertos’ micro-lots are from his farms, he does help these (and other) farmers find markets for their coffees. As each lot is cupped individually, he separates the higher-scoring ones and offers them to his clients. We are a beneficiary of this and have been buying this SHG lot, as well as other single farm lots he separates. It’s a pleasure to work with Luis Alberto and we are truly thankful for the relationship!
At The Coffee Quest US, transparency is key.
Our Transparency Report is available on request, so get in touch today for an in-depth look at our ethical and sustainable sourcing practices!