Taste Notes: Tropical Fruit, Caramel, Vanilla, Peach, Black Tea
Roast Level: Medium
Farmer: Israel Ventura
Elevation: 1680 m.a.s.l.
Holy chocolate and nut bomb, Batman! This coffee is loaded with white chocolate, milk chocolate, and cocoa notes paired with hazelnut, almonds and walnut. Velvety bodied, with a rounded orange acidity, it finishes with caramel and a sweet cacao finish. Accessible. Balanced. Inviting.
Meet the farmer
Among the many special relationships Theodore’s Coffee Roasters’ owner, Darwin Pavon, has developed in his native Honduras, his friendship with the Ventura family is especially close. Of Don Israel Ventura, owner of Finca El Playon, Darwin says, “I can’t really say too many good things about this family! Don Israel loves the farming side of the business. One on my favorite things to do with him is to bring him coffees he hasn’t tried yet, so he always bring the wine glasses out when this happens!”
In his pursuit of coffee perfection, Don Israel grows more than 12 different varieties of coffees at El Playon. This particular coffee is from the Parainema cultivar, developed to resist coffee rust (Roya) and other plant diseases. The beans are larger, similar to Pacamaras. While some disease-resistant varieties seem to lack in flavor, this one does not. In fact, Parainema coffees won the 2017 Cup of Excellence contest in both Honduras and Nicaragua!
Where it's grown
In the southwest corner of Honduras, hard on the borders of Guatemala and El Salvador, we find the Ocotepeque region. Here mountains are cloud-shrouded, volcanic soils lend their coffee-friendly nutrients, and temperate microclimates coax the best out of the beans.
In Ocotepeque as in the Marcala region, many of the people are of Lenca descent, contemporaries of Classic and Post-lassic Mayan cultures. The Lenca are believed to have migrated to the Honduras/El Salvador area from South America some 3000 years ago. Though their original language has been obscured, they retain many of their pre-Columbian traditions. These include Lenca pottery, a distinctive cultural marker, and agricultural practices handed down over millennia. No surprise, then, that these methods are helping to produce quality coffee in the misty mountains of southwest Honduras.