The result of hard work and many years of effort.
After several years working the family business and wanting to continue innovating in the Puerto Rican coffee industry, José A. Martínez, better known as “Macho” in the Saliente neighborhood of Jayuya, takes on the task of starting the brand Don José with his wife Jacqueline Batista. Don José is the result of many years of work as a coffee grower, processor and roaster. After having passed a category 5 hurricane like María, José and Jacqueline saw a good opportunity to start from scratch and here we see the result.
To put some perspective on how devastating Hurricane Maria was to the Puerto Rican coffee industry, the Martínez Coello family had 150 cuerdas planted with coffee, of which 60 cuerdas remained. After the calm came, they began to plant again little by little and now they have 90 cuerdas with the ultimate goal of having 30,000 trees planted by the end of the year. Within this large piece of land at 2,700 feet above sea level there are 15 cuerdas where coffee is grown exclusively for the Don José brand. Among the Arabic varieties that are planted in this land are Bourbon, Limaní, Frontón and Catimor.
Bean Harvest and Selection
When it comes time to start the harvest, José is very rigorous when it comes to harvesting the coffee grapes and that is why he asks his pickers to collect the fully ripe grain in order to guarantee the consumer a quality cup that is very balanced between aroma, sweetness, acidity and body. On the other hand, when processing the coffee José carries out the practice of semi-washing. This process consists of washing the grain, but not completely, since it prefers to leave a little of the cherry mucilage so that the grain, when dried in the sun, absorbs those sugars and as a result gives a cup with better body, acidity and sweetness.
After the coffee is dried and crushed, it goes through a densimeter, machinery that classifies the coffee by density and not by size. As he told us, José prefers to use this mechanism, since it guarantees better uniformity in roasting. It is roasted medium light so that the consumer can appreciate more fruity and sweet notes. In cupping this coffee has given notes of fruits such as citrus, melon and also molasses flavors.
For more information and purchase of Don José coffee, please click here.