Maria Ofelia de Jesus, Honduras, Semi-Washed
CHERRY + PINEAPPLE COMPOTE. DARK CHOC. LEMON & SUBLIME.
Producer: Maria Ofelia de Jesus
Farm: Finca El Manguito
Region: Mercedes, Ocotepeque
Variety: Lempira and Parainema
Altitude: 1,150 masl
You know when you take a big ole glug of some delicious wine and there’s that feeling of your stress just melting away? That’s how we feel when we sip on magic Maria - it’s hard not to just feel *great* when enjoying this black cherry and cinnamon Big Bodied Babe. Using the below Aeropress recipe, we’ve found she comes over all amaretto and caramel with some dark chocolate and raisin vibes that will straight
up improve your mood!
About Maria Ofelia...
In 2007 Maria was left with no option but to learn to grow coffee. It was impossible to earn a living wage in Honduras so her husband left for the USA to try his fortunes with the hope to support their family from afar. The illegal journey, through Guatemala and Mexico, was too dangerous, especially with two young sons, so Maria stayed behind to try her hand at coffee growing without any prior knowledge or experience. Her brother in law taught her the basics, but Maria quickly got the hang of it and fell in love! Maria says... “I fell in love with the purity of the plant, the essence of the beans, the sweeter-than-honey taste of a ripened bean, freshly squeezed out of its dark red skin”.
Finca El Manguito now provides half of the family’s income. The other half is sent by her husband, who is still in the US, and who she simply never gets to see. This deeply saddens her, but it is the only way they can survive.
“I could never leave my village, my people, my surroundings. I have never worked in an office, rarely ever been to a real town, except for Ocotepeque, which has 10,000 inhabitants. And our now 18-year-old son has lost sight in one eye and can only see 15% with his remaining eye. He needs me, and I need him just as much”.
Her younger son, now 16, has followed in his father’s footsteps and recently made it to NYC. Maria says that she misses him every waking hour of every day since he has been gone.
Despite the longing for a united family, she loves her life and simply beams when she enters her two tiny plots of land. “When I’m at work, in the field, protected by the shade that the many fruit trees in there provide, I feel blissfully happy and peaceful. I can take a break whenever I choose to, and when I get hungry or thirsty, I pick a mango from one of the trees, sit down in the cool shadow, to let the tasty texture of the fruit temper my hunger while its juice stills my thirst. Believe me, that’s better than an office, regardless of how much more money people in an office make”.
Our favourite way to brew this coffee at the roastery:
Aeropress Brew Guide
35g medium-coarse ground coffee (SLIGHTLY coarser than typical Aeropress recipe)
300g water total (150g in cup/150g in chamber)
*we brewed ours at 94° and used two filter papers
1. Pre-wet your Aeropress filter over your chosen vessel (this pre-wets your filters, and also preheats your cup).
2. Preheat your inverted Aeropress chamber, too, and be sure to empty both the chamber and the cup before you
3. Put the 35g of coffee in the aero chamber, gently shake the Aeropress to ensure your dry coffee is flat and
4. Pour 150g water into your chosen vessel and put to the side.
5. Pour all 150g water into the Aeropress chamber, evenly covering the coffee grounds.
6. Stir with paddle for 15 seconds, and then add a final boost of turbulence by swirling the chamber for an additional
5 seconds- this should bring you to around 30 seconds in total.
7. At 30 seconds, flip onto cup (that already holds 150g hot water) and begin slow, steady plunge, applying
consistent weight. Total plunge time should take around 30 seconds, bringing the entire brew time to 1 minute.