The Glamour of Central America’s and Caribbean Island’s Coffee
Have you ever heard about “Coffee Belt”? “Coffee Belt” is referring to the area between Tropic of Cancer and Tropic of Capricorn, and close to Equatorial. Since the area located close to Equatorial, the climate condition is perfect to grow coffee. That is why countries who produce coffee in the world are mostly laid on this “Coffee Belt” area.
When you open the world map and have a glance of it, countries which belongs to Central America are all located in “Coffee Belt”, including Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Panama (as the graph shown). Moreover, The Caribbean nation such as Dominica, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, etc, are all in “Coffee Belt” as well. Some people will define them as countries in Central America. However, we will distinguish them more detail when we are talking about coffee industry. In this article, we could introduce the glamour of Central America’s and Caribbean Island’s coffee by mentioning the single origin in our 2017 summer release series.
Full of passion: Guatemala Huehuetenango and Costa Rica Tarrazu
I guess folks who like drinking coffee will be quite familiar with coffee from Central America. Someone will fall in love to a cup of Panama Geisha, others may fancy about Honduras Marcala. Why the coffee from Central America is always impressive? The weather and the geographical condition are compatible to each other in Central America, which is an important advantage in coffee production. The Volcanic soil is fertile. This allows the coffee beans to grow with extinct environment and nutrition. That is why the flavour of coffee from Central America brings the explosive and layers of taste. In addition, The microclimate in Central America is a treasure to the coffee. A region in high altitude will have a large temperature difference between day& night, which will positively affect the quality of the coffee.
Even though the coffee beans come from the same countries, their flavour is not dull at all. It could be very different and colourful. It is because there is influence from different volcanic soil, different altitude level, different planting and processing method, etc. For instance in Guatemala, there is 8 coffee production region. The coffee flavour in each region would be different. In Huehuetenango, the volcanic soil is mainly Calcareous soil, while in Antigua, they are mainly the volcanic ash soil. Since the soil is different, the acidity that perform in a cup of coffee will have sightly different as well. Moreover, taller the region located, the more natural resource the coffee beans acquire. Huehuetenango located at a high altitude among 8 coffee regions in Guatemala. The coffee therefore receive the great resources undoubtedly.
Costa Rica is another country that famous in coffee production in Central America. The outstanding coffee in Costa Rica would be called “SHB”, “The Strictly Hard Bean”. These “Strictly Hard Bean” can only grow well in high altitude region. That is why coffee beans which from those regions are bright and rich in flavour. Tarrazu is one of the four coffee production area in Costa Rica. The long period of sunshine is sufficient enough for green beans in Tarrazu to have a dry processing with good quality. A lot of awarding producer in Costa Rica are from Tarrazu.
The Caribbean Sea’s style: Dominica Barahona
Most of the coffee lovers may hear about Jamaica’s Blue Mountain Coffee. Although the coffee is known by many people, there is still a saying that coffee from Caribbean Islands cannot be defined as Specialty coffee. In my opinion, it depends on how we decide the coffee as “Specialty Coffee”: Only by the scoring in SCAA? Or by the observation start from the coffee production and information to the experience of drinking a cup of coffee?
On the one hand, to decide a coffee as Specialty coffee by score could absolutely make sure it is excellent in quality with the high standard. On the other hand, know more about the background of the coffee, observe it start from the production stage could also find the hidden gem. I guess we could all treat coffee with an open-minded so as to avoid not to miss something gorgeous.
Wanna try some coffee from the Caribbean Sea? Dominica is a good start. She has the unique tropical climate and volcanic soil, these natural advantages allow Dominican coffee to show the characteristic of Caribbean Sea. And Barahona is one of the six coffee production regions, located between high mountains in Dominica. The size of the coffee beans which grow in this area is usually in a big size. It is mature enough to bring the changes in its coffee flavour: smooth and soft acidity, layers of sweetness.
We are really enjoying the coffee from Central America and Caribbean Islands. How about you?