Costa Rica

If there is a problem with Costa Rica coffee, it's the fact that it can lack distinction; it is straightforward, clean, softly acidic, mild. It has lots of "coffee flavor." The trend in Costa Rica was to create large volumes of moderately good "specialty" coffee. There was a push toward high-yield coffee shrubs that lacked the clarity in cup flavor of the older types. They also required a lot of fertilizer input to maintain their bountiful yields. The large mills mixed all the small-farm coffee cherries that were delivered, the high-grown and low-grown, the ripe fruits and the not-so-ripe. The result was mediocrity.

No coffees are currently available from this origin. The review is our most recent offering, provided for reference.
Costa Rica Tarrazu - Jardines de Luijim
Don Pedro, farm manager at Rio Jorco
Appearance.2 d/300gr, 16-18 Screen
GradeSHB EP
ProcessingWet Process (Washed)
RegionAsseri, Tarrazu
Varietal(s)Catuai, Caturra
RoastCity to Full City is the best range for cupping, and I think the sweetness shows best development at a minimum of City+.
Jardines de Luijim is run by farmer Carlos Montero, relative of the Castro Zeledon coffee family. It's a small plot that is part of a much larger organic estate, replete with a washing station onsite. The Estate has a fairly wide range of altitudes, with this particular plot sitting at about 1700 meters above sea level. Jardines de Luijim is roughly 7 hectares (17 acres), and Montero produced roughly 75 bags of coffee this year, 13 considered top tier, micro-lot coffee. This part of the farm is planted mainly in Caturra and Catuai, and is fully washed and milled at the micro-mill onsite. We picked this up through an intermediary who is working to bring in micro-lot coffees from this particular part of Tarrazu, often using wet mills at some of the larger estates to process the coffee since most of these small farms don't have their own mills onsite. Out of the grinder, this coffee has a nice dried stone fruit smell, like apricot and peach, and the sweetness of ginger snap cookies. Dark roasts show a bit of spice in the fragrance, like clove, that compliments the toasted sugar smell brought on with a little more roast. Fruits are prevalent across the roast spectrum, and bolstered with the addition of hot water. Smells of pie fruit emanate from the wet crust, with the dark sugar and pectin notes you'd expect. It takes on more red berry attributes at City+, which while still present at Full City, are a bit overshadowed by a strong scent of dark brown sugar - especially when breaking the crust. The cup is so sweet, with heaps of light brown sugar, with notes of date and raisin. There's a juicy flavor of peach nectar as well, that also defines a stone fruit-like acidity, It's a rather refreshing coffee, with essence of tangerine laced in, especially in lighter roasts. Full City roasts have great mouthfeel, one that I don't always expect from Costa Rica coffees, and with a sweet cocoa flavor as well as a bit of toasted caramel. For this reason, I wouldn't hesitate from extracting a few espresso shots with Full City and beyond roasts. The finish is cocoa all the way which is not drying at all, and with lots of sweetness long after. This is one of the better Costa Rica coffees we tasted this year.