About Costa Rica Sin Limites Yellow Honey
2013 new crop coffee arrived end of July in grainpro packaging.
We have a very small supply of this wonderful "honey" coffee from Costa Rica's West Valley. Grower and micromiller Jaime Cardena is an aficionado of the honey process, better known in some countries as pulped natural. Honeyed coffees for those unfamiliar with term, are cherries that have their outer skin (pulp) removed, then are fully dried in the sun, on raised African beds, while still encased in their mucillage. The drying mucillage imparts a flavor that penetrates through the thick parchment skin that houses each bean. The resulting cup profile, which of course varies greatly, is generally syrupy and more mellow than washed coffees. The color designation such as yellow, red, black are based on how much mucillage remains to dry on the husk; the more mucillage the greater the fruit penetration. Yellow Honey has a relatively small amount of mucillage remaining.
Jaime Cardena has taken Costa Rican honey coffees to a new level. His coffee took second place in the 2008 Cup of Excellence and he is always in the top group.
- Grower: Jaime Cardena
- Mill: San Limites Micro Mill
- Region : West Valley
- Micro region : Lourdes de Naranjo
- Altitude : 4900-5600 feet
- Varietal : Villa Sarchi
- Production : 200 bags/year
His farm is very small, only 1 hectare (2.5 acres). But he has set up an impressive small micro-mill using a Gaviota 2500 pulping machine and processes coffee on behalf of a number of his neighbors in the West Valley. It can be calibrated to remove just the coffee's skin or it can wear mucillage off depending on the miller's intent. And, like all of the modern depulping machines, it uses very little water and has minimal environmental impact. He produces red and yellow honey coffees using the Villa Sarchi varietal, a hybrid of Bourbon developed in this West Valley, known of its sweetness.
Jaime's Micro mill is called Sin Limites, meaning without limits. This
Cup Characteristics: Floral, sweet but not high in acidity due to honey process. Very interesting, almost spicy on the palate. Structured, balanced, solid.
Roasting Notes: Can be handled like any other high grown coffee from the region. The bean are dense and hard, can withstand need significant heat after beans turn to yellow/tan at about 300 degrees. We recommend generally lighter roasts of this coffee, settling in at City+ to Full City, perhaps 45 seconds after first crack.
Red honey on left, yellow on right. The color mainly determined by how much pulp is milled away.
Micro milling machine at Sin Limites
Costa Rica coffee facts:
Population (2006): 4.1 million People
Coffee Production: 1.7 million bags (60 kg)
Country bag capacity: 150 pounds
Domestic Consumption: 380,000 bags
Coffee Export: 1,320,000 bags
Cultivated Area: 82,500 Hectares (203,775 acres)
September to February
Arabica Introduced: Coffee was first introduced into Costa Rica in 1779 from Cuba. First exportation was in 1820.
Farms: About 32,000, over half are small farms (less than 1 hectare).
Specialty Coffee Regions: Tarrazu, Tres Rios, Central
Valley, Pacific Central, South Pacific
Botanical Varietals: Mondo Nuevo, Hibredo/Tico, Villa Sarchi, Geisha, Caturra, Catui
Comments: Coffee is grown in Costa Rica on both the Atlantic and Pacific slopes at altitudes between 1600 and 5400 feet. The highest grade is called Strictly Hard Bean, grown at elevations over 3900 feet. Costa Rica produces some exceptional coffees, renowned for their brilliance, balance and complexity.