This trip, however, I did one touristy thing which I really enjoyed. I wanted to learn how coffee is grown, processed and then packaged. I was fortunate that Cafe Britt was willing to host me, my sister and my mom for the tour.
I was not sure what to expect. Basically Cafe Britt buys coffee from growers and then processes, packages and sells the coffee. They have great coffee. But then again, all Costa Rican coffee is very tasty and we drink nothing else as home. I have even tried the famous Blue Mountain Jamaican coffee and I still like Costa Rican coffee better.
We then walked around the garden area where they had real coffee plants and even a cocoa plant. In between all this, our guides gave us useful information about, what else, coffee. The guides were great. I liked that they did the tour in Spanglish. That way the tourists and locals alike could understand.
After the tour outside, we went to see the coffee roasters that are used to roast the coffee. I had no idea that the way you classify coffee by roast is due to the time it is roasted. I also have to mention that the smell was amazing!! There is nothing like fresh roasted coffee.
The guides put on a little show. It was a little cheesy but fun. Plus, it was totally entertaining. I loved the guides. They made learning fun. We learned the best process for making coffee. Use a french press machine. We learned the best way to grind coffee. And other random information.
And, of course, all roads lead to a gift shop. It was a great tour. We got to taste coffee samples and candy samples as well.
You can buy Cafe Britt products on the online store. Not only do they sell coffee but they have merchandise like t-shirts, mugs, coffee presses etc. They also have cookies, candies and chocolate!
I want to thank Cafe Britt once again for hosting my family! We had a blast.
Some random Coffee Facts (from my demented notes):
April is flowering season for coffee. November is growing season. December to February is harvesting season
You have to pick coffee by hand
25 pounds of ripe fruit equals 3.5 pounds of coffee
The coffee fruit is put in tanks of water to remove the pulp. Then it goes into another tank to go through the fermentation process. The it is put outside to dry on concrete patios. it is raked every hour to ensure it gets dry. It has to completely dry or else it gets bitter. Then what is left, the beans, are roasted. Coffee beans are green and as they roast they turn brown. The difference in the roast of coffee is how long it is roasted.
Never store coffee in the freezer or in paper bags. It will lose its oils and its flavor.