Guatemala Nuevo Oriente, pronounced as "Gwah-tay-mah-lah Nway-voh Oh-ree-en-teh," is a coffee-growing region located in the eastern part of Guatemala. The region sits at an altitude of approximately 1,300 to 1,600 meters above sea level. An interesting fact about this region is that it has a unique microclimate, influenced by the surrounding mountains, which contributes to the distinct flavor profile of the coffee beans grown here.
The history of coffee cultivation in the Nuevo Oriente region of Guatemala dates back to the late 19th century. The favorable climate and fertile soil in this area attracted coffee farmers, who established their plantations and started producing high-quality coffee beans. Over the years, the region has developed a strong reputation for its specialty coffee, which is now sought after by coffee enthusiasts and professionals worldwide.
The coffee farms in the Nuevo Oriente region are mostly small, family-owned operations that have been passed down through generations. These farmers take great pride in their work and employ traditional farming methods, such as shade-grown coffee, which helps maintain the ecological balance and biodiversity in the area. The coffee plants in this region are primarily of the Arabica variety, including Bourbon, Caturra, and Catuai.
While specific processing methods may vary between farms, the general practice in Guatemala is the washed process. In this method, the coffee cherries are depulped to remove the outer skin and pulp, then fermented in water for a specified period to break down the remaining mucilage. The beans are then washed to remove any remaining residues before being spread out to dry, either on patios or raised beds. This process results in a clean, consistent flavor profile in the final cup.
Guatemala Nuevo Oriente coffee is known for its bright acidity, medium body, and complex flavor profile. The unique microclimate of the region, combined with the careful farming and processing methods, contributes to the distinct flavors found in these beans. Tasting notes often include fruity and floral notes, such as red apple, cherry, and jasmine. Additionally, hints of chocolate, caramel, and nuts can be detected, giving the coffee a well-rounded and balanced taste.
In the world of specialty coffee, regions like Guatemala Nuevo Oriente continue to stand out for their dedication to quality, tradition, and environmental sustainability. The unique flavors and characteristics of the coffee produced in this region are a testament to the passion and hard work of the local farmers and their commitment to excellence. As a specialty coffee professional, it's always a pleasure to experience and share the exceptional coffees from regions like Nuevo Oriente, where the history, culture, and dedication to the craft truly shine through in every cup.