Country Profile: Costa Rica

Since declaring independence from Spain in 1821, Costa Rica has been a strong proponent of incorporating coffee into society. From being the sole export of the nation for almost 50 years to propelling the development of railroads to the Atlantic; the role that coffee has played in shaping the culture, economy and infrastructure of Costa Rica, is paramount. 

Costa Rican specialty coffee has maintained a strong reputation for having a dynamic variety of quality flavours and strong traceability in its sourcing. The recent increase of coffee farmers investing in their own small-scale, post-harvest equipment has allowed them to undertake their processing tasks. This means that Costa Rican coffee farmers have had a higher control of their product, thereby increasing the consistency and quality of the coffee produced throughout all regions of Costa Rica. This is a stark contrast to the previous sourcing methods, in which coffee would be blended with neighbouring farms. But with a high level of land ownership (as 90% of coffee farmers in Costa Rica own their production) and quality control, each coffee farmer is able to showcase their distinct flavour profile. This unique characteristic is the result of a government decree from 1831, which stated that anyone who grew coffee on fallow land for five years, could claim ownership of that land.

So, the adventure of exploring the coffee that is produced by the 43,000 Costa Rican coffee farmers, is an exciting adventure full of a dynamic variety of flavours that are unique to each producer. With that said, let’s take a closer look at some of the reputable regions that produce the Costa Rican coffee that we know and love. 

Central Valley

Home to the nation’s capital, San José, the Central Valley is known for being the region with the longest coffee history throughout Costa Rica. Central Valley is also home to three volcanoes, Irazu, Barva and Poas. These volcanoes are a contributor to the region’s high topography, along with the quality soil and growing conditions in the area. The country’s best natural processed coffee often comes from this region.

Tres Rios

Dubbed the “Bordeaux of Costa Rica”, the region of Tres Rios has gained its reputation through producing some of the highest quality coffee beans in the world. Located just to the east of San Jose, Tres Rios basks in the presence of the Irazu volcano, which provides advantageous conditions for the local coffee producers. Coffees from this region tend to have a smooth and “rounded” flavour profile, often described as “easy drinking” cup. 

Miramar

Nestled in the hinterland of the Pacific Ocean, the coffee is grown around the small city of Miramar is known for producing a sweet yet balanced cup. This is a result of the unique position of Miramar, as it benefits from ocean breezes which are swept from both the Pacific and the Atlantic.

Tarrazú

The region of Tarrazú has grown to become such a strong exemplar of premium coffee, that coffee grown outside this region has even been marketed as Tarrazú as an attempt to increase its value. Tarrazú’s high altitude contributes to its valued crisp acidity and established itself as a home to the highest coffee farms in Costa Rica.

Rozali Specialty Coffee is proud to partner with our friends at Planting Costa Rica, who source the highest quality specialty coffee beans from producers in a range of areas, including Miramar, Tarrazu, and Central Valley.

West Valley

It’s favourable climate to grow coffee all year long with a distinct wet and dry season contributes to its reputation as a home for many Cup of Excellence coffee winners. Its perfect climate also contributes to the diverse coffee varieties grown in this region from the local varieties such as Villa Sarchi and Villa Lobos, also the more popular varieties, such as Sl-28 and Geisha.

Coffee Map

Coffee map of Costa Rica
Image by Cafe Imports

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