|Coffee||Santa María de Dota, Costa Rica
Omar Calderón and family
|Tasting Notes||Candied ginger. Oolong. Rosemary.|
This month we’re honored to bring you Granitos de Altura del Ortiz, an award-winning Costa Rican coffee roasted by Maruyama in Nagano, Japan.
This exceptionally rare coffee won the Cup of Excellence in 2015 after being evaluated over 120 times by an experienced international jury. The resulting lot, auctioned in its entirety, is exclusive to Collected Coffee in collaboration with Maruyama.
In the airy Santa María de Dota, a small mountain town along the flank of the Cordillera de Talamanca range of Costa Rica, Granitos de Altura del Ortiz was produced by Omar Calderon Martínez. His farm, Finca Ortiz 1900 is located 1970m above sea level, and Martínez, his wife, and his four daughters have been growing coffee and processing it in their own micro mills for the last 20 years.
Their particular method of processing, black honey, involves drying the coffee on raised African coffee beds and sheltering it from light exposure over the course of several weeks. Black honey is the most labor intensive and expensive of all the honey processes, but it also produces some of the best and most complex flavors, as evidenced by Martínez’s track record of yearly Cup of Excellence-winning coffees.
Granitos de Altura del Ortiz was roasted by Maruyama, a Japanese roaster whose claim in the coffee world is nothing short of spectacular. Maruyama was founded in 1991 by Kentaro Maruyama in Karuizawa, a town in the Nagano prefecture, 200km northwest of Tokyo.
Maruyama is known for bidding on and winning some of the world’s best coffee lots each year; in 2002, they made history by paying the highest price ever in the auction lot of a Brazil Cup of Excellence winner. In 2014, Maruyama also became home to the first Asian barista champion when its staff member Hidenori Izaki won the World Barista Championship.
Well-known for his palate and commitment to producers, founder Kentaro Maruyama is somewhat of a legend. He has cupped more Cup of Excellence coffees than anyone else in the world and he spends more than 100 days on the road each year in the Americas and Africa, visiting producers to purchase coffee from them directly.