Coffee of the Month // July // Quetzal
Origin = Guatemala (Finca Filadelfia)
Process = Washed
Notes = Chocolate // Nougat // Dried Fig
Roast = Espresso + Filter
The coffee region of Antigua, Guatemala is spread across a valley, surrounded by three volcanoes known as tres Hermanas (the three sisters) agua, acatenango & fuego. The coffee grown in this area is enriched by the volcanic soil and tends to hold moisture extremely well.
It is also home to the ancient capitals of the Mayan people. and the name Quetzal comes from the national bird of Guatemala that also features in Mayan mythology as a symbol for freedom.
These beans in particular are produced by 5th & 6th generation coffee growers of the Dalton family in Bosques de San Francisco. A small plot of land on Finca Filadelfia Farm, it is the oldest coffee farm in the town of Antigua and has been awarded twice.
Manuel Matheu borrowed the land in 1864 to plant coffee. After the first harvest he went to London and achieved great success selling his first crop.
Upon his return, Manuel was commissioned by the president of Guatemala to show small farmers how to grow coffee to his high standards. Thus giving birth to what we now know as the coffee growing region of Antigua.
After seeing their family farm was struggling to connect with the international marketplace, as were other local businesses, the Dalton family felt impassioned to create a new platform, with one qualification for entry only. High quality coffee.
Guatemala Through the Years...
Some accounts have coffee cultivation in Guatemala starting as early as the mid-18thcentury, when Jesuits brought coffee plants to decorate their monasteries in the city of Antigua. There are accounts dating back to the early 1800s of Guatemalans drinking coffee.
The great depression of the late 20s and 30s affected Guatemala and it's people. Tired of democratic rule, Guatemala elected their first president In 1940...But he wouldn't last long.
To protect ties with the US and economic interests, president Jacob Arbenz was overthrown in a coup by the CIA and replaced with another dictator in 1954. As a result of this meddling, Guatemala experienced a series of civil wars between the 60s and 90s.
All this political and economical back and forth caused the coffee industry to experience a roller coaster of growth and shinkages. Many coffee farmers were killed in fighting and raids. Infrastructure was halted and the economy was unable to grow.
Many left coffee farming during this period.
But after 20 years of peace in the country, locals have been given the chance they need to get back on their feet, allowing the industry to begin to thrive again.
Today Guatemala is second only to Colombia in producing specialty grade beans. Though farmers still face economical struggles that are left from previous decades of hardship, the local industry is seeing continued growth and demand, which is testament to the resilience of the people.
The Dalton family invite you to visit their historic grounds in the shadows of Volcan de Agua discover History and tradition thaty stretch back 144 years growing gourmet coffee.
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