Honduras Finca El Roble One Roast
Honduras Finca El Roble
I bought Finca El Roble when I started getting carried away (or excited, you decide) with the diversity of coffees coming out of Cafesmo cooperative in Honduras. They support many small producers. This was our first natural and it stood alone as a great character coffee and quite unlike anything else. It took some swallowing, to read the story of this family. Both father and son, with this relatively tiny plot, are so dependent on market prices. There is no space to upscale.
Owner: Rigoberto Mancia Hernandez (Father and Son- Jnr and Snr)
Farm: Finca El Roble Translates to: The Oak (Strong name)
Farm Size: Two small plots totaling 1.4 hectares.
Altitude: 1,320 meters
Varietals: Parainema and Catimoro
Cup Potential: 🍜 Aromatics: Cocoa and jammy red fruits| Body: Creamy | Acidity: Apricot |
Subtle yellow and orange fruit sugars emerge through dark chocolate like a filled chocolate without the calories and guilt. The clean nature of this natural is so subtle, that you have to search for the processing. The big body is the first sign and on cooling the fruit is more like apricot nectar followed by cocoa and a gentle citrus finish. I have been brewing this at 65g per litre and found lots more character. 55g per litre, ground finer, made a shallower less generous drink. It turns out that this fantastic coffee also works in espresso. Ground on a Mahlkonig E80 (we like to mix it up) 90z milk-based drinks. This was very “Neapolitan ice cream” like. Creamy, fruity, and chocolate. No weirdness, just wow. 6oz milk-based drinks. Cozy, creamy cocoa and chocolate. Espresso. Wildly rich and creamy body, cocoa, and stonefruit.
17g of coffee into 34g in 26-28 seconds for milk-based drinks. 17g of coffee into 45/50g of espresso liquid 26-33 seconds. We start brewing coffees at 93.5C (in espresso) and increase or decrease as necessary.
Rigoberto Mancia Hernandez (Father and Son- Jnr and Snr) work together, managing their plots. Rigoberto (Snr) started off growing beans and corn, to build up enough money to buy a small plot. Since that point, he has been growing coffee and his son, (also Rigoberto) has grown up with it and just wants to be the very best he can be. What is really telling is his quote “I’m happy to be a coffee grower, but I feel shaken and debilitated by the ferocious forces that the international markets have on our lives. Our livelihoods are at stake and we are too vulnerable, too dependent on factors that we cannot influence, to determine our own destiny and build a stable future. So we try to look for ways to become less dependent on the ruthless, conventional market”. Both Rigoberto’s keep bees, as this makes their plots more fertile and they also have honey to sell locally. This is why specialty coffee still has a place. I hope we can make it work. As always, if you want to share your brews, you can here