This is a coffee grown by the amazing Gillio Francesa Ferraro, a mature guy whom I met on my trip to Costa Rica a couple of years ago. We have a rule at Has Bean that if you’re over 40 you can be a character (under 40 and a character just makes you weird). Well, Gillio is the perfect example of a character. The first thing he said to me was that my belly looked as if I ate too much, and that I should lose some weight. I was in the midst of exercising and dieting; his brutal honesty was refreshing, if not a little quirky.
The thing that made me smile was that he was driving an old Jeep that was falling apart (he told me it was from the ’60s). The best part was that the engine was a Dorman engine built in Stafford, UK. My father-in-law and two brothers-in-law all work at the factory, and it was amazing to be in a foreign location and see something so linked to home.
You might have looked at the name of this coffee and thought, “oof! Steve that’s a bit of a long one!” but I actually cut it down a little from what it could have been, there’s only so much space! Costa Rica I’m sure you can guess is the country and then Zarcero is the micro-region/canton of Costa Rica that the coffee comes from. There could then have been Finca La Casa which is the name of the farm and Gillio Francesca Ferraro is, as we’ve already discussed, the amazing fella that grows the coffee. Yellow honey is the processing method which is a variant of the pulped natural process, then finally Caturra is the varietal of the coffee. Take a deep breath and say it with me now…Costa Rica Finca La Casa Zarcero Gillio Francesca Ferraro Yellow Honey Caturra!
This is not your typical Costa Rican coffee. Forget all that has come before; this is a unique cup. It’s a Caturra coffee, and is grown at an altitude of 1,700 metres above sea level. Gillio has 2 farms in Costa Rica, this one is called Finca La Casa (which just means ‘farm at home’) and can be found in the Western Valley area of Zarcero. The land around his house is rugged and difficult to farm. Gillio manages to get the very best out of it by working the land every day, even at the age of 83. I hope I’m half as active as he is when I get to that age!
In the cup this is very sweet and very fruity, think raspberries coated in gooey caramel. There’s a delicate satsuma acidity throughout the cup, and it finishes with with a hint of black tea.
- Country: Costa Rica
- Region: West Valley
- Province: Alajuela
- Micro-region: Zarcero
- Farm: Finca La Casa
- Producer name: Gillio Francesa Ferraro
- Farm size: 2 Hectares
- Altitude: 1,700 m.a.s.l.
- Production: 150 bags/year
- Varietal: Caturra
- Workers: 20 harvest pickers, 4-5 farm workers, 2 mill workers
- Pulping: Penagos technology from Colombia – Fully Washed Mechanical elimination of mucilage
- Drying: 100% “Yellow honey” process on African beds