Our world is turning green as the rains have ushered in a time of growth and signs of life here in Nicaragua. As the season shifted Cassie and I ventured to two local coffee farms in order to learn more about the care and nurture that goes into the creation of the perfect cup of coffee.
Some things that the average connoisseur of coffee may not know is that coffee grows on trees. Unfortunately these trees require a great amount of care as they are susceptible to many different forms of disease and fungus. Furthermore, the life of a coffee tree is only about 10 years. The best coffee is grown at a height of over 3,000 feet and in almost full shade. Thus, coffee here in Nicaragua is grown in the highlands and the farms are gorgeous. There are tall shade trees filled with birds and monkeys; and banana and plantain trees towering over the coffee in order to protect the plants from too much sun. As we walked through the towering hills we had to mind our step as there are several large ditches dug into the hillsides to catch rain water to be used during the dry season.
We took the opportunity to buy some coffee beans directly from the farmers and I have been roasting them here at our house with my trusty popcorn popper. It has been interesting to taste the different varieties and note the different floral and flavors found within the coffee of Nicaragua. I hope to involve myself in the harvesting process that takes place in December in order to even better appreciate the care and tiresome labor that is necessary to fill our cups.