Costa Rica Sonora Estate Bourbon Honey
FLAVOR: TANGERINE, LAVENDER, HONEY
Sonora Estate holds a special place in our hearts here at Temple Coffee. We have had the pleasure of serving their coffee every day for seven years in a row. Sonora Estate Red Catuai Honey has been a cornerstone offering in our Dharma Espresso and Three Pillars blends. While each component has changed slightly from farm to farm or lot to lot, we have always offered the Sonora Estate Red Catuai Honey in these blends.
Sonora Estate is dedicated to minimizing their environmental impact. The farm is run off energy harvested from the fresh water spring that runs through the farm. The power generated runs the micro-mill, the farmhouses, and their home estate while the excess energy is sold to the government to help fund the farm. They have also dedicated themselves to using only honey and natural processes. This has cut their water usage by 3 gallons per pound of coffee produced, and at over 300,000 pounds produced per year that is a whopping 900,000 gallons of water saved every season. The downside of producing coffee using these methods is the time investment required of the producers and the rest of the team. Each lot must be micromanaged for moisture levels, sugar content, contact time with direct sunlight, drying time, and many more variables that have to be perfect in order for their coffees to taste how they do. If even one of these variables is not controlled perfectly by Alberto and his son, their coffees would be far less special than they are.
Alberto Guardia’s family has owned Sonora Estate for many years. Alberto bought the farm from his family who used the land to produce sugar cane. He realized a few years into sugar cane production that they would never be able to grow the business without a major change. So Alberto took a risk; he pulled up half of his sugar cane fields and planted his first coffee plants. He got his processes down and pulled up more and more of his sugar cane fields to be replaced with coffee.
After some time Alberto realized that his farm would never grow larger unless he purchased his own micro-mill and processed his own coffee. So Alberto took another risk. He installed the micro-mill and mastered both the honey and natural processes. He began to process coffees from farms across the Central Valley. Alberto has been able to raise the quality level of everyone’s coffees in the region, giving each of the farmers that use his mill a higher minimum price per pound and a greater distribution of wealth.
Alberto’s son Diego has grown into his right-hand man at the farm. Together they have restructured their production schedule and have maximized their output at Sonora Estate. Diego has overseen purchasing and development of new land used for both high-quality micro-lots and blending components. Together they have created a team of dedicated and passionate people to keep the farm moving forward in the years ahead.
Recently Alberto has taken up a passion for coffee roasting and brewing. He can be found during his spare time in his dining room roasting on their sample roaster and playing around with different brewing devices and styles. He is an extremely passionate man and between his love for his coffees and his love for his family we are very lucky to count him among our very best of friends.
Country: Costa Rica
Farm: Sonora Estate
Altitude: 1250 MASL
Production Method: Honey