We are super excited to introduce you to this month's Magic Seeds, a honey processed lot from Las Lajas in Costa Rica's Central Valley. You may remember this coffee from when we featured this coffee in August. Well, we won a Good Food Award for it and brought it back to celebrate!
We have plenty to say about that, but first let's take a look at our Daily Drinker.
Your February Daily Drinker comes from the West Valley of Costa Rica. It is a regional selection of multiple farms, each with their own combination of coffee varieties and processing influence. You should see similarities between your two coffees this month, as Caturra and Catuai are among the most common varieties in the area and more farms are adding honey processing to their standard approaches. However, you will see a different level of flavor precision in the Magic Seeds, as it features on exceptional farm and the Cachons' particular attention to detail.
In the cup we first experience flavors of chocolate covered cherries, with a creamy mouthfeel, and a slightly boozy finish. As the cup cools a sweet nuttiness comes forward that reminds us of toasted walnuts and brownie batter.
Your Magic Seeds for this month come from a famous micromill we were able to visit a few years ago and owned by farmers we have met multiple times. The process we are featuring this month is one of the first they showed us in detail.
This coffee is from Las Lajas in Costa Rica's Central Valley. It is a yellow honey processed lot of Caturra and Catuai varieties grown on their farm Calle Liles. Oscar and Francisca Chacon are third-generation coffee farmers and are among the first to produce honey and natural processed coffees in Costa Rica. After a 2008 earthquake cut off the farm's water supply for a few weeks, Oscar decided to attempt these water saving methods he knew we used in Ethiopia and Brazil. Andrew from Café Imports was among the first to taste the result and became the first buyer of that fateful experiment.
Las Lajas is one of the only organically certified mills in the area and they take conservation environmental impact very seriously. With their use of a mechanical depulper and careful practices in their honey and natural processing, they use virtually no water for milling. While they produce multiple styles of honey, this lot is a yellow honey, which is meticulously stirred every hour. This gives the added fruity sweetness we explored last month, but with an additional transparency due to quicker drying.
rotating the honey process at the Las Lajas mill
Grinding this coffee, we were struck by the vibrant tropical fruit and berry aromas that filled immediately filled the air. It smelled like the best fruit punch you could imagine. Upon our first sips we experienced the same notes with strawberry, banana, pineapple, raspberry and guava being the standout flavors. These bright notes were supported by hints of vanilla bean and lightly toasted almond that continued to develop as the cup cooled. As the brightness dissipated, cocoa notes came forward. Fully developed, this coffee reminded me exactly of my favorite treat growing up; Bavarian cream flavored frozen custard with dark chocolate chunks and fresh raspberries.
We hope that you have loved this month's award winning Magic Seeds and look forward to sharing another exceptional experience with you next month.
About the Good Food Awards
image provided by Café Imports