Guatemala coffee – whose cultivation, introduced by the Jesuits, dates to 1773 – is one of the best in the world.
Huehuetenango, at the foot of the Cuchumatanes, the highest non-volcanic mountain range in Central America, is one of the most suitable areas in the country for caficoltura. Warm air currents from the isthmus of Tehuatepec cross paths, in fact, experiencing cold air blowing on the Cuchumatanes mountains, help you cultivate coffee up to 1900 metres. And it is precisely at higher altitudes you get the best product. Until the Spanish conquest in 1525, Huehuetenango was the capital of the Mam Kingdom. Its territory, in the northwestern part of Guatemala, on the border with Mexico, has an altitude ranging from 850 to 3700 meters and offers an extraordinary variety of ecosystems (from the subtropical rain forest to pine forests).
Indigenous peoples, who constitute the vast majority of the inhabitants are descended from different peoples Maya, including Mam, Akatecas, Chuj, Kanjobal, Jacaltecas, each with its own distinct culture and language. Due to a centuries-old social exclusion, aggravated by the international crisis coffee prices of the early 2000s, are among the poorest people in Central America.
In Huehuetenango coffee is virtually a monoculture and the region's economy depends on itsexport. The only way out of this situation is unfavorable to diversify: focusing on deep, high-quality coffee and introducing other products (hot pepper, anise, vegetables) less suitable areas.
The Presidium coffee is extracted from plants of Coffea arabica (Typica, Bourbon and Caturra varieties) grown in the shade of tall trees. Harvesting is Manual: cherries are separated one by one and placed in Wicker baskets strapped to hips. The beans are extracted from the berries by hand, through a delicate process of fermentation that begins within four hours of the harvest and lasts for 24-36 hours. After pulping, the grains dry out in the Sun for at least three days, continually revolted with a rake.
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