Four Barrel Coffee

Featured in December 2013 Box

There’s a special little town called Agua Dulce (“sweet water”) tucked away in the northernmost corner of the Huehuetenango region in Guatemala, just a stone’s throw from the Mexican border. What makes the town so unique is that when the locals claim “there’s something in the water” it’s not just a cliched figure of speech. As it turns out, most of the land throughout Huehuetenango (say it with us - way-way-ten-AN-go) has been devoted to the production of sugarcane since the end of the 17th century. Over the years this has infused the region’s groundwater with a delicate but pronounced sweetness. As charming as the region itself, this expressive coffee from San Francisco darlings Four Barrel is a celebration of what we consider one of the most fascinating terroirs in the coffee world. The seasoned farmers of Flor de Cafe tend three separate lots of coffee across the estate, each under different growing conditions and with its own distinct qualities. Four Barrel’s head roaster Tal Mor went crazy for the youngest lot, which also happens to be grown at the farm’s highest elevation. As a rule of thumb, coffees from high elevations boast intensely developed flavors - and this one is certainly not an exception. Roasted with finesse in a vintage German roaster, Flor de Cafe is exuberant up front but gradually comes down for a smooth, sweet finish that shows off the agua dulce’s naturally enchanting character.

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We feature truly small-batch, seasonal coffees. So there might not be any left. But that's a good thing! Only big corporate factories have the same stuff all year round.

  • Roaster

    Four Barrel Coffee
    San Francisco California
  • Producer

    Flor De Cafe
  • Origin

    Cuilco, Huehuetenango, Guatemala
  • Varieties

    Pacamara
  • Elevation

    1,500-1,550 meters above sea level
  • Process

    Washed, sun-dried
  • Our Notes

    Juicy and dynamic, with pomegranate, red raspberry, and tamarind acidity complementing intense brown sugar sweetness and flavors of toffee and pecan brittle.

Featured in September 2013 Box

On a clear morning, you can stand on the canyon edge of Marco Anonio Romero's coffee farm in Hulia, Colombia and through your binoculars glimpse something on the opposite canyon edge – Antonio Zuniga's farm. Zuniga and Romero's shared commitment to great coffee has bridged this craggy distance. We're proud to bring you beans from these hillside neighbors, hand-selected by Four Barrel Coffee in San Francisco. They've roasted this dynamic, layered brew according to their hallmark computer-free, intuition and skilled based approach. So when you take a sip, think about the canyon between Zuniga and Romero, between Colombia and San Francisco, between San Francisco and your home, and remember – coffee has the power to make those canyons seem, well, pretty small.

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We feature truly small-batch, seasonal coffees. So there might not be any left. But that's a good thing! Only big corporate factories have the same stuff all year round.

  • Roaster

    Four Barrel Coffee
    San Francisco California
  • Producer

    San Agustin Los Cauchos Farmed by Marco Anonio Romero and Antonio Zuniga
  • Origin

    Los Cauchos, Huila, Colombia
  • Varieties

    Caturra
  • Elevation

    1,800-1,925 meters above sea level
  • Process

    Washed, dried on parabolic beds
  • Our Notes

    This lively and delicate cup opens with aromas of clove and orange zest. A sparkling hibiscus acidity balances warming flavors of cinnamon, toasted almond and vanilla that linger on the finish.

Featured in May 2013 Box

Big things come in small packages, but what about small regions? When Four Barrel Coffee went to Gera Woreda, Ethiopia, they found a wealth of flavor that had previously been obscured by bad infrastructure. Thanks to the help of a nonprofit, the 240 small farmers of Yukro Cooperative now enjoy a shared washing station, better transport, and more direct payment than ever before. This new infrastructure means they can now ‘wet process’ their crops, leading to more flavorful coffees that yield bigger profits. In this brew, tropical fruit aromas lead into a luscious cup that is sweet like palm sugar. It finishes clean and dry.

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We feature truly small-batch, seasonal coffees. So there might not be any left. But that's a good thing! Only big corporate factories have the same stuff all year round.

  • Roaster

    Four Barrel Coffee
    San Francisco California
  • Producer

    Yukro Cooperative, farmed by 240 smallholder farmers
  • Origin

    Gera, Agaro, Ethiopia
  • Varieties

    Heirloom (Ethiopian)
  • Elevation

    1900-2100 meters above sea level
  • Process

    Washed
  • Our Notes

    Tropical fruit aromas lead into a luscious cup that is sweet like palm sugar. It finishes clean and dry.

Featured in January 2013 Box

For Rwandans, the road to recovery is paved with coffee. Coffee is the nation’s most important crop, but structural problems—like antiquated tools and land erosion—have undermined production. Enter Cotecaga Wet Mill, a collective that united 1,750 smallholder farmers in 2006 to pool resources for processing and export. This year’s harvest shows the true potential of coffee from the region, with an impressive complexity. In the hands of Four Barrel Coffee, the result is juicy lime acidity that complements flavors of toasted walnut and black cherry, a deep, syrupy sweetness, and a soft marzipan finish.

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We feature truly small-batch, seasonal coffees. So there might not be any left. But that's a good thing! Only big corporate factories have the same stuff all year round.

  • Roaster

    Four Barrel Coffee
    San Francisco California
  • Producer

    Cotecaga Wet Mill, farmed by 1,750 smallholder farmers
  • Origin

    Macuba, Nyamasheke, Rwanda
  • Varieties

    Bourbon
  • Elevation

    1500-1700 meters above sea level
  • Process

    Washed
  • Our Notes

    Juicy lime acidity complements flavors of toasted walnut and black cherry, a deep, syrupy sweetness, and a soft marzipan finish.

Featured in July 2011 Box

You have to admire the perfectionist streak of Luis Alejandro Ortega, a second-generation coffee grower in Colombia’s San Agustin. Rather than accept the status quo, Ortega is constantly working to improve his (already stellar) harvest. He grows only the Caturra variety, pays his workers a higher-than-average wage, and invests in equipment--like the raised drying beds that finished this wet-processed and fermented lot. The extra effort shows up in the cup: roasted by San Francisco’s Four Barrel Coffee, you’ll find bright, snappy notes of nectarine, orange zest and graham cracker.

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We feature truly small-batch, seasonal coffees. So there might not be any left. But that's a good thing! Only big corporate factories have the same stuff all year round.

  • Roaster

    Four Barrel Coffee
    San Francisco California
  • Producer

    La Cabana farm, farmed by Luis Alejandro Ortega
  • Origin

    San Agustin, Huila, Colombia
  • Varieties

    Caturra
  • Elevation

    1,725-1,750 meters above sea level
  • Process

    Wet-processed, fermented for 14 hours and dried on raised parabolic beds
  • Our Notes

    A beautifully balanced cup with a nectarine sweetness and acidity that cools with lingering notes of orange zest and graham cracker.

Featured in February 2012 Box

One sip of this brew and you’ll understand that great things come in small packages. This particular batch of coffee originates from just three small lots farmed by producers Eliecer Guatin, Marino Ortega, and Leonel San Pablo. They hail from San Agustin, Colombia, a town blessed by rich land and diverse producers. Four Barrel Coffee’s roasting philosophy is humble as well, favoring individual, experienced artisans in lieu of complicated machinery. It’s no surprise that this coffee is wonderfully balanced: apple-cider acidity is complimented by notes of honey and caramel, then finishes with a taste of graham crackers and pears.

Create an account or login to buy this coffee

We feature truly small-batch, seasonal coffees. So there might not be any left. But that's a good thing! Only big corporate factories have the same stuff all year round.

  • Roaster

    Four Barrel Coffee
    San Francisco California
  • Producer

    Farmed by Eliecer Guatin, Marino Ortega, and Leonel San Pablo
  • Origin

    San Agustin, South Huila, Colombia
  • Varieties

    Caturra, Bourbon, Typica, Colombia Heirloom
  • Elevation

    1650-1900 meters above sea level
  • Process

    Washed, fermented for 14-24 hours and dried on parabolic beds
  • Our Notes

    A wonderfully balanced cup, with a soft apple-cider acidity, flavors of honey and caramel, and a succinct finish reminiscent of graham crackers and pears.