Barista Magazine

AUG-SEP 2019

Serving People Serving Coffee Since 2005

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grams of cherry. That means that in our 30 minutes of picking, we only picked the equivalent of two shots of espresso at the least and eight shots at the most. That 30 minutes obviously doesn't include the time it takes to process, pack, export, import, and roast, all of which has to hap- pen before coffee gets to us. What's more, that amount of coffee is what most of us will purge and toss any time we make a grind adjustment. The message Marysabel and Moises asked us to carry back home came down to just how much effort is put into making a single cup of coffee. Marysabel described coffee as their "jewel." They take care of the coffee, the roaster takes care of the coffee, and for the people who care for the fi nal step of the coffee journey—the baristas—it's very important to be the face of that coffee, to care for the producers' jewel. It was a sobering moment, hearing them talk about how much they care about their work and their people, and how much they rely on the end of the chain, the people brewing and serving, to represent their coffee well so that they can continue to do what they do. D AY 6 — M A R C A L A , F I N C A E L P U E N T E The last coffee experience of our trip was an incredible cupping that Marysabel and Moises set up for us at their home. They have their own cupping lab there, and put together a table of nine coffees: four processes of Catuai, two processes of Java, and three processes of Gesha. Genuine- ly, it was the most amazing table I've ever cupped. Every single coffee had its own spectacular qualities, from a honey Catuai that tasted like blueberries and lemon zest, to a washed Java that was fragrant, spicy, and nutty, to a natural Gesha that tasted like strawberries and cream. We left Marcala for Tegucigalpa, where we would fl y out of the next day. While we were all ready to go home, it was certainly bittersweet to leave and end our journey in Honduras. At our last dinner together, we talked about the trip and what we had learned. One of the best phrases I heard, and I apologize for not remembering who said it, was, "It's not too much of an effort for me to go out of my way to educate people when I know how hard farmers work." That's an important sentiment because it truly isn't diffi cult to make sure people know where their coffee comes from, and all the people who had a hand in getting it to us. That is why it's so important to pay a good price for it. Our trip was truly a celebration of the seed-to-cup process, and be- ing able to see the actual people involved—pickers, farmers, produc- ers, exporters—was an experience I feel privileged to have had. The people we met in Honduras were unforgettable. Each was dedicated in their own way to their craft and their community, and how those two intertwine. I can't wait to go back again and again to see more and be a part of it. Interested in learning more about celebrated Honduran coffee producers Marysabel Caballero and Moises Herrera? Then check out the profi le we published about them in "Master Q+A," in the June + July 2019 issue. You can read it for free online at www.baristamaga- zine.com, or via our free app! A er a vigorous morning hike, our group enjoyed fresh coconut water at a hilltop stand. Before descending back down to San Pedro Sula, we took a photo with the coconut-stand security guard, who excitedly posed with his machine gun for the snapshot. PHOTO BY BEN HELFEN 48 barista magazine

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