Farm: Finca Los Positos
Varietal: Caturra & Red Catuaí
Processing: Fully washed & dried on raised beds
Altitude: 1,250 to 1,350 metres above sea level
Owner: Luisa Esmeralda Gonzalez
Town / City: San Antonio de las Nubes, San Juan del Rio Coco
Finca Los Positos (Madriz) - Nicaragua
Finca los Positos lies within the municipality of San Juan de Rio Coco – one of Nicaragua’s most important areas economically for coffee production. Most of the people living in the rural areas within the municipality grow coffee as their primary source of income, and it’s no surprise that coffee is a ‘big deal’ here. The region’s average temperature hovers at about 21˚C (rarely climbing above 26˚C), and the high elevation, fertile soil and diversity of flora to produce shade are perfect conditions under which to produce great coffees.
Luisa Gonzales is a coffee enthusiast who has worked in Nicaragua’s coffee sector for the past 20 years – mostly managing coffee cooperatives. However, it wasn’t until 2008 that she decided to try her hand directly at farming coffee. Her goal as a farmer was to marry much of what she had learned working with small producers with her commitment to quality. The high quality parameters she established were: solid, traditional varieties, elevation, microclimates and a passion for coffee. When she purchased Finca Los Positos in 2013, she knew she had a potentially winning combination!
Luisa completes all the work on her farm herself, fertilising three times a year, doing weed control by machete, and managing shade carefully so as to keep the trees sheltered and hydrated and to prevent erosion. Many of the trees she’s established as shade also have a secondary purpose: producing food! Newer plantations are interspersed with banana, guava and plantain.
All coffee is processed at the farm’s own wet mill. Only the ripest and most perfect cherries are picked during the harvest. These are delivered immediately to the wet mill, pulped, and then fermented in wooden tanks for between 14 to 20 hours depending on the climate at the time. After fermentation, the coffee is fully washed and then soaked in clean water until all traces of mucilage are removed. After washing, it is delivered to the Guadalupana mill in Ocotal where the coffee is carefully and evenly dried on raised beds. The drying process takes between 12 and 18 days depending of the weather, during which time it is carefully turned on a regular basis. After achieving optimal humidity, the coffee is rested and then dry milled at Ocotol mill when it is ready to be exported.