The spring can be a dead zone for many a coffee menu and most glaringly so for Latin American offerings. Last year's Centrals are undeniably past crop by now. South Americans, with the exception of the December harvested Colombians, are ready to be replaced. Fresh crop Centrals are going afloat but very few are available so early in the spring.
Guatemala, and the regions within the Sacatepequez province in particular, harvest earlier than that of their counterparts around the country. These coffees can be harvested as early as December and typically finish before March. Are they the best that Guatemala has to offer? No. They are very sweet, clean coffees. They're coffees that clearly have that crisp, fresh acidity at a time when most others don't. These are versatile coffees that work well as both drip and espresso.
We have two early season offerings for you all right now; Guacatepeque and Finca Candelaria Lote Cedro. The Guacatepeque is comprised of small holder farmer lots in the Alotenango area surrounding Volcan Fuego. Its a group new to us but one we'll certainly plan to grow with. This lot is classic Guatemala. The fragrance is chock full of toasted almond and caramel. The cup profile is subtle yet well balanced and sweet. This is what your customers want to drink. Its an approachable coffee with no flaws. Finca Candelaria is a farm owned by our long time friends the Zelaya family. Its senior's baby if you will and you'll be hard pressed to find a farm with as much investment put into it as Luis Pedro Sr. has put into this one. This is an intermediate level coffee farm as far as altitude is concerned. Candelaria tops out at 1350 masl. This is about as good as 1350 masl coffee can taste. It's flavor is sweetly citric like mandarin with touches of raw honey mixed in for good measure.
Along with Colombia these are the best bets for youngest coffees available in the market right now. We suspect they'll be snatched up with haste so don't hesitate. Our Huehue project lots are soon to be in route so hang on for reinforcements. The cavalry is coming.