Located in the dry southwestern hills of Honduras, Las Capucas is the model of a well run Cooperative. Their official name, Cooperativa Cafetelera Capucas Limitada or COCAFCAL. The cooperative, run by Omar Rodriguez, utilizes modern washing and drying facilities to produce this fantastic coffee.
The town of Capucas is home to just over 80 families who produce coffee. One of those producers is Jorge Luis Rivera, who owns Los Lirios, or “The Lilies.”
The Riveras are members of the Capucas cooperative, and for years have sold their coffee through the co-op. Recently they established a small mill on the farm, and started processing their own coffee: they pick only the ripe Caturra trees, depulp, and ferment without water for about 15 hours before washing, and then dry it on raised beds in a secadora. In 2011, Jose Luis entered the coffee they processed into the cooperative’s annual competition to recognize quality producers, and won second place.
Irving Farm’s Coffee Buyer, Dan Streetman, was one of the judges at this competition, and purchased the coffee. After trying the coffee back at their roastery, Dan decided to form a long term relationship with Jose Luis, and this coffee has become an Irving Farm favorite year after year.
This year’s crop is a fantastic example of the improvements that have been made community-wide. Focusing on ripe cherry selection and micro-mill processing control have had a tremendously positive impact on the quality of the coffee. The farmers in Capucas have also obtained Organic, Fair Trade, and Rainforest certifications to reflect their commitment to their environment, and a fair social ethic.
This coffee is certified USDA Organic, meaning its production did not involve the use of synthetic substances such as most pesticides, herbicides and fertilizers.
Welcome to my Table, here in the corner of this cafe. Today we’re sipping a cup of Los Lirios Honduras, from Irving Farm Coffee Roasters in New York, New York, courtesy of Craft Coffee. Feel free to pull up a chair.
region: Copan, Honduras
farm: Los Lirios
producer: Jorge Luis Rivera
association: Cooperativa Cafetelera Capucas Limitada
elevation: 1460 – 1650 meters above sea level
process: fully washed, raised bed dried
The Los Lirios Honduras aroma is delightful, with pleasantly bright scents of zesty orange peel, nuts, cherry blossoms, and cocoa.
Diving into the first few sips of the coffee and my taste buds are immediately blanketed by bittersweet chocolate, brown sugar, cinnamon raisin bread, oatmeal, and hazelnut. In addition, the orange peel notes that were present in the aroma are already showing up again, here in the form of a zesty acidity that streams down the sides of the tongue, ensuring that every part of the palate gets to experience this coffee’s unique profile.
As it cools off, the acidity leads the charge of a much brighter second half, clearing the way for lime, cherry, cranberry, apricot, kumquat, and golden delicious apple. These flavors don’t last long, though, as the coffee has a quick, succinct slightly dry finish that leaves behind faint hints of rosemary, dill weed, and cherry blossom.
Light body; juicy mouthfeel; citrus acidity; slightly dry finish.
the bottom line:
The Los Lirios Honduras, from Irving Farm Coffee Roasters, is a complex, dynamic, and intricately dense cup of coffee that delights, excites, and transfixes the taste buds all at once. This one really impressed me, and it was handled very well by the folks at Irving Farm.
This cup represents something of a rarity for a Honduran coffee, as its profile is delicate, with more savory and fruity elements rather than fuller-bodied, with more outdoorsy notes (earthiness, wood, spice, etc.). Having said that, though, the Capucas has a little something for everybody, with at least some flavors to please all palates (though I wouldn’t necessarily label it a “crowd-pleaser”).
Delightful coffee—one that I highly recommend.
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