Las Amazonas Honduras CoE #8

Continued advancements in Honduran coffee growing and processing, along with the incentives and recognition offered by the annual Cup of Excellence competition, are the genesis for more and more great coffees coming out of this nation. We’re delighted to offer the #8 selection from the 2010 Honduras Cup of Excellence, a tart lime tweak on a rich, spicy stonefruit base.

While Honduras shares many attributes of good soil, high altitude and temperate climate with its neighbors, coffees from Honduras have often suffered from poor processing and lack of exporting infrastructure. Luckily, these factors have begun to change; events like the Cup of Excellence (CoE), first held in Honduras in 2004, have helped create incentives for producers to pay closer attention to cup quality, which has improved dramatically over the last five years. At the 2010 Honduras CoE, Dallis Bros Coffee had a seat at the judging table and we were happy to see so many unique and truly beautiful coffees.

Las Amazonas ranked 8th in the 2010 competition. When farmer Ezri Moisés Herrera Urizar arrived to the La Paz region of Honduras in 1992, he believed the climate and soil were right to grow excellent coffee. Using his life savings, he purchased some coffee farms that were in need of improvement and some unplanted land, currently he and his wife Marysabel Caballero have about 28 hectares, either in production or still developing. About 90% of it is planted with Catuai, though Urizar has been experimenting with planting Bourbon in shadier sections of his land, which is between 4,750 and 5,500 feet above sea level.

The farm has its own wet mill with a de-pulper, fermentation tanks, washing area, drying patios and mechanical dryers.The mill uses water and gravity channels to help separate coffee cherries by density. The farm also has its own storage area to rest the coffee before its transported to a dry mill for final preparation and sale. All this care and attention at every step along the coffee’s journey from seed to packaging for export really pays off in the cup. Cup of Excellence judges describing it as having notes of rich dark chocolate, with a caramel-y sweetness and a spicy, dried apricot nose. The soft lime acidity is perfectly balanced by a velvety, round body.