Regions and Coffees of Note for Single Origin Coffees in Central America: Guatemala

Posted on Mar 29, 2012

Regions and Coffees of Note for Single Origin Coffees in Central America: Guatemala

Guatemala is not far from Panama when it comes to single origin coffee – in fact, it has some great varieties of its own that rival anything that is produced in Central America (and perhaps even South America for that matter). If you skip the Guatemala coffee for a more popular name like Columbian coffee, you’re about to find out what you’ve been missing out on.

Antigua: Produced – where else? – in Antigua, Guatemala, this is one of the premier names in all of single origin coffees. The elevations in Guatemala are perfect for Arabica coffees, and Guatemalans use this to full effect when cultivating Catuai, Caturra, and Bourbon varieties of Arabica.

  • Bean description: A very hard bean, these beans generally grow in cooler regions of Guatemala some one mile above sea level. Consistent humidity keeps the beans themselves consistent and offers a very predictable (which is a good thing) quality amongst the coffee plants. It’s hard to find a bad Guatemala Antigua coffee bean.

Atitlan: These coffees come from the land surrounding Lake Atitlan, an area that gets a lot of rainfall every year which means higher humidity as well. A lot of the coffee grown in this area is grown with organic fertilizers because pests aren’t a major problem, which is good for single origin coffee seekers looking for something that hasn’t used a lot of inorganic materials.

  • Bean description: Rich and full, these beans of Bourbon and Typica plants tend to be great for producing powerful coffee flavors for true enthusiasts.

Coban: This coffee comes from the north-central area of the Guatemala. Like most of the coffee grown in Guatemala the beans here come from high altitudes that are friendly to varieties of Arabica.

  • Bean description: A rich, spicy flavor makes Coban a great coffee for someone who wants a little kick with their breakfast. The beans themselves live up to the “wine of the bean” nickname of coffee from Arabia because these beans also have a slightly fruity and wine-line aroma.