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NOTE: All of our premium Arabica coffees are roasted to City+ to Full City roasts, showing minimal-to-no surface oils….we want all of the flavor to stay in the beans until the coffee is ground! Despite the additional descriptors, the first flavor and aroma you'll think of is "COFFEE".

Mexico Alfred Klein Finca San Carlos

Country of Origin: Mexico
Mexico Alfred Klein Finca San Carlos
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Mexico's long and complex history as a coffee origin is too interesting to winnow down to a few paragraphs, and it's roughly where my personal linkage to the bean began. I spent most of the 1990s in Toluca, capitol of the State of Mexico, where I was playing in the local and prominent symphony orchestra, the OSEM. Across the street from our hall, the Sala Felipe Villanueva, there was a lovely roastery-café called the Molino Rojo, run by a couple from the State of Veracruz, one of the country's important coffee and agricultural sectors. They encouraged me to venture into coffee country while on a planned trip to Chachalacas Beach in Veracruz, and I spent a weekend in a luxe estate, Posada Coatepec, which sat in the middle of the rainforest plantation which the owners oversaw. Splendiferous indeed. Walking through the lushness one morning I encountered one of the caretaker farmers, whose freshly-processed green coffee was spread out in front of his hut on a tarp. “Finest in the district!” he proclaimed,and offered to sell me 5 kilos (for $5 US in total), which I would take back with me to Toluca to be roasted at the Molino Rojo on their 12 kg. Diedrich. Edith Martinez, saw my little bag of goodies and promptly upbraided me…”ayy, Camellito, es pura planchuela (inferior!...what did I know??) Y pagaste doble lo que deberia!” Seemed hard to believe I at $1 per kilo I had paid too much, but what did I, a pinche gringo, know?? She roasted it up anyway, and it was indeed not as tasty as the beans she and husband Florencio had been bringing to the café. Lesson learned! It would be another 5 years before I was back in the US and getting manically into home roasting, and for too long I avoided buying Mexican green beans at all.
Half-ashamed I haven't been paying as much attention to the Mexican growing scene for years. The coffee rust which devastated much of Central America a few years ago has had lasting repercussions on production and agronomy but there are glimmers of hope. To that end we took a gander…after a lengthy and fascinating story here and part II here…at an excellent washed coffee from producer Alfred Klein and his Finca San Carlos in the Unión Juárez region, State of Chiapas. Processed using double fermentation of several varietals (Bourbon, Caturra, Catuai, Sarchimor and Typica), this high-grown coffee is a departure in some key aspects. Mexican coffees tend to be light-bodied, but this one is full and dense. Very clean and consistent, all the more interesting because the varietals and screen sizes are quite varied. Chocolate, stone fruit (plum, cherry, peach), and vanilla notes emerge prominently in drip methods in this light-medium roast. We were able to get a relatively small amount of this coffee and hope the coming years bring more bounty and abundant sacks-ful.
If you want an in-depth perspective on coffee growing and culture, I urge you to read the saga of this farm…it goes back to 1896… as told by the owner.
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