Tres Milagros Costa Rica Ethiopia Heirloom Special Selection
- June 2017
- Written by : Jay Mlodzinski
Green Coffee Logistics Manager / Green Coffee Buyer
This unique coffee marks the start of two new adventures: a new project called Tres Milagros and a new collaboration with and old friend, Camilo Merizalde of Colombia.
Old Friends: Camilo Merizalde
Camilo Merizalde is a coffee grower from Colombia with an adventurous spirit from whom we have been purchasing coffee for the past decade. Intelligentsia regulars familiar with our Colombia offerings will recognize Camilo’s name and many of his coffees. The Red Bourbon from his Santuario farm in Cauca is a fan favorite, but he is best-known in the coffee world for some of his more exotic offerings: unique varieties like Sudan Rume that we don’t often see from other growers, and Eugenioides, which as far as we know, hasn’t been offered by any other grower in the world.
New Collaborations: Tres Milagros And Ethiopia Heirloom
Tres Milagros is Camilo’s new venture in Costa Rica, every bit as audacious as his undertakings in Brazil, Panama and his native Colombia. It consists of two large coffee farms in the Tarrazu region of Costa Rica called Finca Tobosi and Finca Higuito, where Camilo has been busy planting varieties that are uncommon in Costa Rica: not just Red Bourbon, Yellow Bourbon and Typica, but also Sudan Rume, Ethiopia Harrar, Ethiopia Sidamo, Geisha and others.
When Central America was hobbled by coffee leaf rust during the 2012/13 crop year, many farmers turned their attention to CATIE, a tropical research institute in Costa Rica that for decades has been at the forefront of coffee breeding efforts to develop disease-resistant coffee varieties. But Camilo isn’t like most farmers. While his neighbors may have been most interested in getting improved resistance to disease from CATIE’s varietal garden, Camilo went there to search for flavor.
Ethiopia Heirloom Special Selection
CATIE doesn’t just have disease-resistant varieties, it has the largest public collection of coffee germplasm in the world: nine hectares planted with over 9,000 coffee trees, including nearly 2,000 different varieties. Some 800 of of those varieties are from Ethiopia, including the heirloom variety we are releasing today.
Occasions like this one do not present themselves to us very often. We already partner with some of the best coffee growers in the world, and our network of existing relationships is deep, broad and reliable -- we don’t often need to stray to source amazing coffees. And exacting standards, high expectations, careful protocols mean we do not bring new coffees into our lineup without extreme vetting. This was no exception: Tres Milagros has been tres años in the making.
This nano-lot from Finca Higuito in Tarrazu, Costa Rica, is our first offering from Costa Rica in over a decade that we sourced from someone other than Coopedota and release outside the Flecha Roja family. But it isn’t altogether new.
Camilo is an old friend, after all, and his tendency to experiment with exotic varieties as well as his focus on quality are well-known to us. Furthermore, this lot was milled by our friends at Coopedota, which means it has been executed to its fullest potential.
We are extremely excited to offer you our first Tres Milagros Costa Rica release. The flavor notes of Asian pear, peony and lychee we taste in this coffee are just the tip of the iceberg, and a sensory bridge between Ethiopia’s past and Costa Rica’s future.