Santa Isabel sits 1,400-1,600 metres above sea level in Guatemala’s Veracruz region, famous for its breathtaking mountains, dense rainforest, and cool climate with plenty of rainfall. The farm is a family business, founded in 1875, and it is now run by 4th and 5th generations of the Valdés family: owner Luis Valdés and his son Luis Jr. – nicknamed ‘Wicho’ – a trained agronomist who manages the farm.
The property is 300 hectares in size - 200 are planted with coffee and 100 are dedicated to natural forest reserve. The farm boasts a nursery, where new coffee plants are grown in the shade, and a weather station, which helps Wicho determine the best times for planting, fertilising and pruning. There is also a wet mill onsite, where the coffee is taken after picking to be pulped and fermented before being dried.
This is the 7th year in a row that we've offered Santa Isabel at Market Lane. When we asked Wicho what makes the coffee so special, he told us, “First of all, I’d say our microclimate: the weather, the long periods of humidity, the rainforests that surround the coffee plantations. Also, a good nutrition helps a lot. And finally, in a very small amount, the hard work and passion we put into our work with the coffees!”