Farm: Mexico: Nueva Esperanza Mexican Water
Varietal: Typica, Catuai, Red & Yellow Caturra, Red & Yellow Bourbon
Processing: Fully Washed
Altitude: 1201 - 1500 meters above sea level
Owner: Alan Greene Moreno
Town / City: La Concordia
Overall: Cinnamon, Toffee, Marzipan, Almond
Mexico: Nueva Esperanza Mexican Water - Mexico
Located roughly four hours from Tuxtla Gutierrez, Chiapas, Finca Nueva Esperanza, translating as ‘New Hope’, was first purchased in 1960 by Ricardo Baumann Brenner and his wife Celia Moreno. After Ricardo's death in 1973, Celia continued managing the farm, involving herself in everything from planting seedlings, setting up a nursery, cultivation and harvesting; all in the pursuit of high-quality coffee.
To this day, the farm is still owned by the Moreno family. Inherited by Alan Moreno in 2010, the farms reputation gained particular traction after in 2015, Finca Nueva Esperanza were selected by Starbucks Reserve to be their first full Mexican micro lot. Since then, Nueva Esperanza has been noted for its excellence and as an example of ‘best practices’ for specialty coffee in Mexico.
As an organic producer, production at Finca Nueva Esperanza is free from added pesticides or fertilisers, with old cherry pulp used to rejuvenate the soil. This does, however, leave coffee trees open to disease, with one of the main challenges at Finca Nueva Esperanza being the maintenance of older trees. To combat this issue, 25% of Finca Nueva Esperanza is renovated every year, making sure the remaining 75% is working at full productivity. Regularly adding new trees also allow producers to cycle in new varieties such as Marsellesa: the variety is becoming increasingly popular in the region for its resistance to leaf rust.
Processing in the region begins initially with coffee cherry being selectively handpicked, before being bagged and brought to the farms own wet mill. Finca Nueva Esperanza employees 60 members of staff to help pick in the harvest season, typically carrying out five passes to only pick the ripest of cherry. One final round is often carried out in the region, used to collect dried cherries and green cherries to create ‘Cerezo’ (sold to Coyotes for national consumption).
At the farm's wet mill, the coffee cherry is first sorted by hand and separated by quality, before being pulped of its cherry. Next, the beans are cleaned with cool clean water from the nearby river, before being placed into tanks to ferment. Here, the beans will remain for around 24 hours, depending on the climate. Once complete, the coffee is taken to the farm's patios and slowly dried, maintaining control to keep the flavour of the bean. Here, the beans will remain for several days, until moisture reaches below 12%. Finally, the dried coffee is milled at and bagged, ready for export.
Some of the biggest challenges faced in the region as well as at Finca Nueva Esperanza, come in the form of climate change and labour shortages. This year in particular (2020), an early harvest and labour shortages caused by tightening border controls from Guatemala created difficulty for Alan and his team. However, due to their hard work, Finca Nueva Esperanza was still able to produce a fantastic crop.
About Mountain Water Decaf
This unique non-chemical decaffeination process uses clear pure waters from the highest mountain in Mexico, the Pico de Orizaba, known as Citlatepetl in the local indigenous language.
The process works by immersing the green beans in water to extract the caffeine content. The water preserves the soluble flavour components of the green beans, helping to protect the original characteristics of the coffee.
To remove the caffeine from the water containing these soluble flavour elements, the water is passed through a filtration system. This produces a solution comprising the origin mountain water and the soluble coffee flavours, now free from caffeine.
The resulting green coffee is 99.9% caffeine-free. The beans are then dried to the required moisture content, polished and packed, ready to export in 69kg bags.
The Moutain Water Process is patented and is also organically certified under the regulations of OCIA, NOP and JAS. It is also Kosher certified.