Golden Citron comes from Finca La Merced, in the town of San Martín Jilotepeque, Chimaltenango, Guatemala. Finca La Merced has been owned and operated by the Alburez family since Francisco Alburez purchased it in 1832. The name Finca La Merced comes from the Mercyous religious order it belonged to. Francisco Alburez inherited the farm to his daughter María Alburez de Ortega and her husband, Manuel Ortega y Carrascal. Finca La Merced was passed on to their son, Carlos Ortega Alburez, who planted the first coffee trees in 1912. The farm was split in 1955 in La Merced and El Retiro de Quisaya. La Merced represents around 20% of the land and El Retiro the remaining 80%. Carlos and his wife, Balbina, had to abandon the farm in 1981 due to the internal conflict.
This family heritage has been passed on from generation to generation until today. The children and grandchildren of Carlos and Balbina are committed to keeping this tradition alive. Both farms have a wet mill, and the drying is mainly done on patios.
El Retiro is a traditional farm, meaning all the coffees are washed and handpicked with an average fermentation of 18 hours. At the mill, coffee is floated, pulped, fermented in tanks, and classified in long water channels (separating floaters, primary and secondary quality). For the drying process, the excess water is eliminated on patios during the first day, and then coffee is placed on raised beds to finish drying. The entire process takes around ten days.
The final cup brings sweet milk chocolate and caramel notes, paired with the brightness akin to citrus fruit and a delicate mouthfeel of black tea. We felt this lot represented some of the best we’d tasted from Guatemala this year.
#GoldenCitron #ComplexCups #ElRetiro