Depending on the region your Honduras coffee was grown in, these beans can have a wide variety of flavors. From sweet and chocolatey to fruity and mild, these well-balanced beans with low acidity and a rounded body are surprising critics around the world. Honduras coffee is no longer just a base for more popular coffee blends.
Best Honduras Coffee
- Country of Origin – Honduras, Central America
- Best Known Growers – small, independent farmers and members of the Instituto Hondureno del Cafe
- Altitude – 1,100 to 1,650 meters
- Harvest – November to April
- Milling Process – washed, sun-dried on patios
- Aroma – strong, sweet and nutty
- Flavor – nutty and cocoa notes, smooth and without bitterness
- Body – soft, smooth, very dark but balanced
- Acidity – low and soft
- Certification – Organic readily available.
About Honduras Coffee
It’s thought that the Spanish first brought the Arabica bean to Honduras, but there’s no solid evidence of this. Given that coffee beans were introduced to other Central American countries around the late 1700s, it would make sense that they also bought coffee to Honduras at that time. While many countries have just one flavor profile that varies slightly from region to region, Honduras is unique in that the beans grown here are almost unrecognizable from each other.
The blend we’re currently recommending is full of smooth, chocolatey notes without any bitterness and low acidity. This profile is from the Copan region, one of the cooler coffee growing areas in the country. This particular bean is best with a medium roast to draw out those smooth flavors. It’s naturally very dark in color even when a medium roast is used.
You may be wondering why you haven’t seen Copan region coffee labeled on the shelves – growing single origin coffee is relatively new in Honduras. Over the past 60 years or so, coffee production has grown significantly and our markets haven’t quite caught up yet.
In the late 20th century, Honduran coffee growers would smuggle their beans across the border for selling in Guatemala just to get the price up a bit. For decades Honduran coffee beans were only used as base coffees in more complex blends. It’s only recently that the investment the government has made into Honduras through road systems and incentives for coffee growers has started to pay off. We’re now seeing world-class coffees being produced and processed skillfully from even the most remote Honduran coffee estates.
About the Region
Beans from Honduras vary widely across the 6 different fertile growing regions in the country. For notes of tropical fruits, caramel, and pronounced acidity, pick beans grown in the tropical region of Agalta. If you prefer lightly acidic, bold and creamy coffees, rich with chocolate and caramel but lacking fruity notes you should try the coffees grown in Copan instead, which has a much cooler climate by the coast.
The climate varies drastically from the tropical jungles to cool mountains and coastal plains, creating the different coffee flavors. One element that unites all regions in Honduras is rainfall. The heavy and frequent rainfall in this country is actually quite a problem when it comes to drying out the coffee beans. Nonetheless, Honduras is persevering and now provides almost 4% of the world’s coffee.
Nearly all Honduras beans are labeled as certified Organic and you can also find shade-grown and bird-friendly certifications too if you look hard enough. However, you’ll struggle more to find Fair Trade certifications. With the government IHCAFE program supporting and educating coffee growers, there’s really no need for Fair Trade to get involved.
Honduras coffee is still emerging into the coffee market and the Coffee Dorks can’t wait to find out what else these diverse coffee beans have in store for our taste buds!
Anthony is a professional barista in the city of Chicago. He has written for many online publications on various topics related to coffee.