Erwin's Journey to Cup of Excellence

The Cup of Excellence is an annual competition held in several countries to identify the highest quality coffees produced. It is organised by the Alliance for Coffee Excellence, which was founded by George Howell and Susie Spindler. The winning coffees are sold in internet auctions.


Bella Elizabeth

The farm was purchased by Mr. Florencio Modesto Argueta in 1954. The first fields were planted with Typica and Bourbon, and they were planted two meters apart – the current recommendation by the National Association of Coffee in Guatemala (ANACAFE), however not usual at the time. The plants used to be planted much closer together, with the mind-set that more trees per area, equals higher yields, without thinking about the soil depletion and the size of the root system.

In 1978, when Mr. Modesto passed, his kids - Alvaro, Erwin and Magnolia took care of the production and administration of the Farm. It continued to be managed as Mr. Modesto had intended, with quality of the coffee in mind.

The passion and devotion slowly faded, disappointed by low prices, climate change and difficult harvests. In 2000, when the farm was divided between the tree siblings.

Soon after Erwin passed and his son Erwin Jr. took over the farm and called it Finca Bella Elizabeth, in honor of his daughter Ana Elizabeth. He began working hard to better the quality in hopes to obtain better prices.

We have been working with Erwin Jr. since 2013 and in 2016 we cupped every day-lot and selected the best one to enter Cup of Excellence Guatemala. As we anxiously awaited the results, we learned that it had cupped 89.50 reaching 6th place! 

We are happy to have this panela sweet, aromatic coffee with cherry acidity and a long silky mouthfeel  on our offering!