Immersion is my favorite way to experience a new country. And you couldn’t wipe the smile from my face the days we spent at Miraflor Nature Reserve in Nicaragua. Not only were we deep in the heart of Nica countryside, we were also on a coffee farm.
Besides being a protected haven for flora and fauna, Miraflor hosts an agricultural cooperative where campesinos farm plots using organic methods. We stayed with Dona Corina Picado at her farm, La Posada Sonada.
We explored the coffee fields, learning this is what a coffee berry looks like:
And a coffee flower smells like an orange blossom.
And that coffee plants grow well under bananas.
We stumbled upon a few farmhands filling American-style backpacks with hand picked berries. Clearly, harvesting was a slow process. We watched this young man dump the day’s harvest into the machine to wash and sort the berries.
Here’s where the berries dried:
Dona Corina showed us her earthen oven, fueled by a wood fire, where the coffee is roasted. And this is how coffee is ground, outside the modern world:
It was here that I learned a cup of coffee should be drunken slowly, and savored.
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