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August 09, 2018
Finca La Torre is 90 Km from Guatemala city, located on the hills and steep slopes of the Acatenango Valley. The highlands of Guatemala are a true agricultural mosaic, dotted with bustling small towns birthing from the agriculture and trade of the region. The areas adjacent to the main artery, the CA-1 International Highway, have been transformed tremendously in the past decade. The small villages have grown into busy towns, and the traffic is starting to become a problem in this area of Guatemala.
The gate to the farm is through a thriving yet small town called Patcizica. The descent to the valley of Acatenango is through narrow winding roads bordered with avocado farms that slowly transition to coffee plantations. The bustling commercial activity morphs into a slow paced rural landscape, reminiscent of the past. Colorfully dressed natives walking in the cobbled or dirt roads going home after a hard day of work. Children playing in the street as if it was their soccer field.
When we got closer to the farm the owner Ernesto (Neto as all his friends call him), welcomed us in a very small village called Paraxaj. The rest of the journey to the farm was on steep dirt roads only accessible with All-wheel drive, horses or mules. Our vehicle had to stay behind at this point.
Upon arrival I noticed the Acatenango volcano could be seen to the left of the home. Today the giant was sleeping, and a veil of clouds covered the crater. Its hard to believe from this peaceful vignette, that just last year the volcano had covered the farm in ashes. The volcano gives and takes. It adds rich minerals to the soil, but it can easily damage the fruit trees and canopy cover of the farm. The forest canopy protects the precious coffee trees beneath them, making them less vulnerable to the whims of the looming giant.
The next thing I noticed was the garden of the home. The main patio of the house, is planted with ornamental and fruit trees. A large Hass avocado tree heavy with fruit for family consumption shades the hammock and a small breakfast table. Various cultivars of coffee decorate the land, along with flowers and other edible plants and fruits.
Ernesto Perez Galvez, the eldest son and current administrator of the farm was there to meet with us and talk about the farm. We had a great time at the farm learning about the coffee production, and the people that make this wonderful bean a reality. Neto and his son told us many anecdotes coloring and slowly revealing the stories behind Finca La Torre. We had Pizza from a local restaurant, toured the farm and had a cup of the family reserve coffee made with one of his favorite gadgets the Chemex pour over.
On our next blog we will tell you more about the farm, share with you some of the family stories, and some fun facts about the farm that make us very proud of offering this unique coffee at www.bhbcoffee.com
July 09, 2018
June 18, 2018
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