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Guatemala Huixoc

September 2, 2005

This will be a combined review, both of us having received samples. For a description of Bob and Jim's evaluation procedure, see our reference page.

The Huixoc, a shade grown, "bird friendly" coffee is well known to home roasters, since many green vendors carry it year to year. Yet this coffee has a dual personality. In some years, it lives up to its Huehuetenango origin and delivers a light floral coffee. In others, it cups more like a Fraijanes, heavier bodied, chocolatey, and quite suitable for espresso. The coffee is 100% Bourbon, and this old cultivar is more variable and generally deeper toned than the Caturras and Catuais that have become normal for the region. As usual, I roasted this coffee to a medium City Roast, stopping about 10F short of the second crack.

Jim: In the first three days after roasting, I didn't get either of the personalities from this coffee, but harsh acrid tones instead. After that, the cup bloomed into a muscular slurper, with medium toned apple cider notes on top, and marzipan, chocolate, and mild spice underneath. This personality translated well to the straight espresso shots and cappas. If someone wants the classic Bourbon flavors in an espresso, this one will deliver. I rarely advise people to rest coffees after roasting, since they frequently miss out on some great evanescent aromas; however, with this coffee, I'd definitely recommend a 3 day rest before use when doing a light roast.

Bob: For me, right out of the roaster, this coffee shined. Occasionally there are coffees that, as you experience the aroma in the grinder, you already know that they will be winners. This was one such coffee. After roasting it just beyond first crack, it had an attention-getting dry aroma of nuts and chocolate, and this was a consistent theme throughout the cupping and subsequent trials with different types of preparations. My roast yielded a rather mild coffee that was more akin to a Panama than a Guat. But it was nevertheless a treat no matter how I prepared it. I especially enjoyed it as a cappa "dessert".

Jim's Score
Dry Fragrance: 3.0
Wet Aroma: 4.0
Flavor: 8.0
Finish: 7.5
Acidity: 7.5
Body: 7.5
TOTAL (subtotal + 50): 87.5

Bob's Score
Dry Fragrance: 4.2
Wet Aroma: 4.2
Flavor: 7.8
Finish: 7.8
Acidity: 7.5
Body: 7.4
TOTAL (subtotal + 50): 88.9

  • Lighter Roasts: Apple cidery aromatics, some marzipan and chocolate. Jim said it needs a long rest but Bob found it to be nutty/chocolaty, right out of the roaster.
  • Darker Roasts: Chocolate and spice notes become stronger; can take a dark roast.
  • As Espresso: Classic Bourbon flavors as an SO when roasted Full City, good in small milk drinks.


UPDATED: June 27, 2005