Episode 682

Nicaragua Finca La Escondida Washed Red Catuai

Fresh red apple balances against sweet caramel, but then the aftertaste brings a rich cocoa for a great, well-balanced coffee.

Nicaragua Finca La Escondida Washed Red Catuai

Finca La Escondida is close to Lake Apanas near the city of Jinotega, which is the capital of the department of Jinotega in the north-central region of Nicaragua. The straight translation from Spanish to English of 'escondida' is ‘hidden’. Escondida is called 'Escondida' because the farm is 'hidden' from the road by forest and trees, which makes it appear to blend right into the side of the mountain.

The first coffee trees were planted at La Escondida 'just' fifteen years ago in 2006 and this makes, in the grand scheme of coffee farm things, La Escondida still a rather young farm. The farm was planned around identifying the plots with individually different micro-environments resulting from factors such as soil quality, sun exposure and temperature range. This is one of the upsides of planting a new farm: getting to plan ahead!

Some of the downsides of starting a brand new farm can be that it may take a while for the quality of the cup profile to build up, it might take time to have the right facilities for processing and picking, and it might take time to train the staff for picking and processing. Not to mention that it might take a while to achieve the yield to go with it all. But this farm, for us, has hit the whole group of requirements running. As a result of their experience in the area, the Mierisch family have built a new mill with a huge investment, and they utilised some of the people already in place in the neighbouring 'San Jose' farm to blend together an Escondida team comprising experienced and new members.

The varietal of this lot is Red Catuai. The owners selected it for the farm because they thought it would do well with the soil quality, sun exposure, temperature range and weather conditions, given the farm's quite exposed on the side of the mountain.

Fresh red apple balances against sweet caramel, but then the aftertaste brings a rich cocoa for a great, well-balanced coffee.

  • Country: Nicaragua
  • Department: Jinotega
  • Farm: La Escondida
  • Farm manager: Boanerje Martinez Montenegro
  • Coffee growing area: 92 manzanas
  • Altitude: 9751,230 m.a.s.l.
  • Varietal: Red Catuai
  • Processing method: Washed


Red apple, caramel, cocoa

  • Clean cup: (1–8): 6
  • Sweetness: (1–8): 6.5
  • Acidity: (1–8): 6.5
  • Mouthfeel: (1–8): 6
  • Flavour: (1–8): 6.5
  • Aftertaste: (1–8): 6.5
  • Balance: (1–8): 6.5
  • Overall: (1–8): 6
  • Correction: (+36): +36
  • Total: (max. 100): 86.5

Roast Information
Medium-dark - through first and let it slow just a little as you go through the gap, looking for the very first pops of second as you finish the roast.