Café Pulcal from Hacienda Carmona, Antigua, Guatemala, sourced via Sevenoaks.
Guatemala is a country that has rich volcanic and very fertile soils. While originally bananas were popular, coffee has always been a player in the region. Probably the most famous coffee area in Guatemala is the area of Antigua, this coffee comes from a certified Antigua producer.
“The reputation for high-quality coffee from Antigua is the basis upon which the country has built its magnificent repute for coffee from Guatemala. It’s been considered the best coffee in the country for over a hundred years and, most likely, is considered among the best in the world.
“Nevertheless, it wasn’t until 2000 that 34 local producers came together to create the Genuine Antigua Coffee Growers Association (APCA). Their objective was to protect the name ANTIGUA. This name provides denomination of origin to the coffee, as well as guaranteeing the quality and, most importantly, maintaining the standards that have shaped the worldwide reputation of Guatemala’s best coffee, Antigua coffee.”
Antigua is located strategically between three main volcanoes. This has the result of rich and perfect coffee growing conditions. The volcanoes are Agua, Fuego and Acatenango. Fuego is an active volcano that is always smoking and erupts with some frequency. The area around Antigua has varied and abundant natural fauna and flora. Antigua, Guatemala is one of the best preserved historic cities in Spanish America, found in the region there are ruins from the Mayan past.
The climate in Antigua is temperate throughout the year with steady moisture and cool nights. The fact that there are no extreme variations between the wet and dry seasons makes this a perfect area to grow coffee.
Hacienda Carmona History
Hacienda Carmona is a well-known farm run by Maria Zelaya. Her farm (Hacienda) is based in the highlands of Sacatepequez in Antigua. Maria Zelaya takes special pride in her coffee, dairy cows, flowers, coffee mill, and just about everything at Carmona. Maria Zelaya, a third-generation coffee farmer, currently owns and operates the wet mill too.
The farmhouse dates from the Spanish colonial period but coffee was planted much later after the farm was purchased by the Zelaya family at the end of the 18th century. Maria Zelaya Aguirre has been running the farm since 1959. Luis Pedro Zelaya manages all aspects of coffee cultivation, harvesting and processing. The coffee from the farm sold under the name of Café Pulcal. Moreover, it is processed and washed in a traditional manner, using crystal clear spring water from the mountains. Once the desired moisture level is reached, and orders place it is milled on the farm.
Hacienda Carmona won cup of excellence in 2010
This coffee restored our faith in Antigua coffees. Its rich body feel and great complexity makes it a real winner and probably the first specialty grade coffee we have had from this region.
|Farm / Region:
|Hacienda Camona, Antigua, Guatemala
|Total Farm Area:
|Main crop: December – April (2018).
|Washed, dried and milled on the farm
|1,600 – 2,000 masl
|GrainPro in hessian
|Arabica Typica, Bourbon
|A four-star complexity coffee with caramel, cocoa and spice notes.
|Intense flame to start, with a gentle decrease to assist decreasing ramp rate, then acceleration into first crack, when flame it dropped to 50%, and coffee is dumped a minute after first crack.
|The ACPA program has it is core traceability and social responsibility.
|Producer / Organisation
|Hacienda Camona, El Puclal
|Pending, waiting for Sevenoaks to permit us to publish
|84-86 (depends on the season)
|Lot size bought
|8-10 x 69kg bags, yearly
|WE have an indirect relationship with Hacienda Camona, that goes back to 2007. This is one of the first coffees we offered from Guatemala.