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Bold Bean Coffee Roasters

Guatemala El Platanillo Gesha - Natural Process

Regular price $13.00 CAD
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Grind Size

Floral and tropical tones dominate the cup with notes of passionfruit, watermelon and coffee blossoms

Producer Info

The name of the the coffee farm is called El Platanillo, but the name of this specific lot of Gesha is called El Mirador. 

The name El Mirador translates to “watch tower”, and it the name for this lot is because it sits at the very top of the farm at 1,450 masl and you can see the whole farm.

This lot took approximately 30 to 35 days in a sun dried natural process. During the first 3 days of the drying process the cherries are moved 3 times per hour, after day 4 until day 7 the cherries are moved every half an hour and from day 8 until the lot is done drying the cherries are moved 1 time every hour. Each day lot is cupped separately and the then once cleared by QC, blended.

Farm History

In 1977, Mr. Samuel Coto Escobar purchased Finca El Platanillo and managed it until 1985. In 1985 the farm management was passed to Mr. Samuel’s youngest son, Mr. Stuardo Coto. Since then, management has focused on the ecosystem, the community, coffee quality and productivity. 

At Finca El Platanillo, Stuardo has managed to promote and perpetuate environmentally friendly practices which are not only compliant with current day certifications, but with his own personal quest to find the balance between the ecosystem and a productive high quality coffee plantation as one wholesome unit. Close monitoring of flora and fauna has allowed for the rich environment of the region to thrive in the farm.

Protecting the ecosystem is a principle that has guided all the constant improvement that the farm undertakes each year. Because this principle was always priority, by the time certification programs such as

RFA (Rainforest Alliance), Starbucks’ “Café Practices”, 4C, etc. came into existence, Finca El Platanillo was already in compliance with most of the requirements to obtain these certifications. El Platanillo has been certified by Rainforest Alliance since 2005. At one point even pioneering what was RFA’s Climate Module as the first farm in the world to implement this once extra sustainable program that is currently part of RFA’s standard requirements.

The community of people who live in the farm has access to their own garden to grow vegetables, and fresh water flowing form the 7 water springs in the farm is also provided to people living in the farm, and also the nearby communities.

Education has also been at the top of priorities at Finca El Platanillo. The farm had a simple school teaching grade school classes inside the farm for children who lived there since the farm was first started around 1978. In 2002 along with the help of long-term clients, the Nuevo Platanillo School was opened as a project to provide education to children of El Platanillo and also to children from the neighboring communities who wanted to learn. The school is located on land originally donated by the farm, very close to different communities. This project has continuously evolved, and the school building has been upgraded many times. A fully connected computer lab providing Internet access to all the children is used to teach the basics of computing from an early age.

Most recently, the farm has engaged in pioneering a new education program in conjunction with Funcafe (Anacafe’s social arm) which was awarded SCA Sustainability Award in 2017. The project’s name is “Bachillerato en Ciencias y Letras con Diplomado en Café” and for this program El Platanillo and its sister farm El Panorama are host farms providing space to run small plantations, housing for the students, along with expert advice and access to coffee professionals. Through the years, a few graduates from this program have joined specific projects within the Coto family’s farms, and many are still working with us.

Regarding the coffee itself, high quality and productivity have always been the goal. For many years, Stuardo, has been constantly studying and researching varietals that will adapt at El Platanillo’s specific conditions. Rainfall in El Platanillo is considerably above average for Guatemala, and thus, not all varieties adapt well to the microclimate. For this reason, many years ago he started a varietal garden where all varietals (around 150 different ones by 2021) are deeply studied both for their production capabilities, adaptation to the microclimate, and most importantly cup characteristics. Varieties that are found ideal for the farm are thoroughly tested and then plotted as a new plantations.

Along with varieties, much research has been done regarding processing. Keeping in mind the high environmental cost of water usage, natural process has been selected as part of the main processes to research in order to standardize less use of water in coffee processing at El Platanillo. El Platanillo’s quality control, led by Samuel Coto, son of Stuardo, has been evaluating data from all processes with the many varieties tested in order to determine a recipe for achieving the best attributes in cup while still using less resources to process the coffee.

After 10 years of selecting and re-selecting the best plants from an original group of Gesha, the team at El Platanillo managed to select from many different processes, a single coffee lot to be a competitor in the Cup of Excellence competition in 2020 effectively placing on 10th place for Guatemala’s best coffee. The coffee was a 30 day Natural process Green tip Gesha from our Mirador Lot at 1,400 to 1450 meters above sea level.

We roast and ship Monday - Friday.
Orders received before 9am typically ship same day.

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