La Candelilla was one of the first micromills in Tarrazú, opening in the year 2000, though the idea to open the mill came to the growers in 1997, during a coffee crisis. It’s a collaboratively owned micromill, established by 7 smallholder producers in Tarrazú: The farmers who use it and deliver their harvests to the mill share ownership. This lot is from one of the founders of the mill, Ricardo Hernandez Naranjo, who was one of the first to suggest to his farmer mates that they should start the “mini beneficio.”
Don Ricardo has been growing coffee for 32 years, and is dedicated to the process, as are many of the producers who utilize La Candelilla. Don Ricardo also worked for 10 years as a consultant at beneficios in Costa Rica, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Honduras, Panama, and even Tanzania, helping mills improve their processing and learning more about coffee quality.
“The production of processing specialty coffees is something I have been studying for 15 years,” he says through a translator. “I have had to develop the processes as well as to identify the different varieties for special batches.” He grows several different varieties and processes them in many ways, including this classic Washed presentation of a Typica variety.
His trees grow in rich ultisol, which is a type of red-clay soil that is particularly fertile in humid tropical or subtropical areas. This soil composition contains no calcium carbonate or lime. Once the ripe cherry is brought to the mill, it is processed depending on the profile and the weather.
For more information about coffee production in Costa Rica, visit ourCosta Rica page.