Welcome to Garden Coffee
Garden Coffee is proud to offer premium, single origin, high-altitude coffee beans. We fresh roast your beans to order in Lakewood, Colorado. We roast in small batches and even custom roast to order so you always receive the freshest possible coffee from Garden Coffee.
At Garden Coffee, we roast on an Artisan X-e Fluid Bed Air Roaster. Air roasting produces a coffee that has a cleaner, brighter taste than transitional drum roasting units produce.
We differentiate ourselves by sourcing a majority of our coffee directly from small farmers in the high mountains of Honduras. Our flagship coffees are from small high-altitude farms, including Finca Las Liches, Finca Valentina, Finca Buena Vista and others who have achieved certification stamps of international quality, USDA Organic, Fair Trade, Rainforest Alliance and UTZ. Each season we feature beans from other small farms in Honduras and other Central American Countries as we are introduced to new farmers in our network. We support hard working families that take pride in the family business of growing coffee. They understand the value of family support and respect for the earth.
John and Delmy Mattos started Garden Coffee in 2016. Delmy, a native Honduran who immigrated to the USA in 2000 had always wanted to be involved in the coffee business. Her desire to help the small family farmers of her native country is the foundation of Garden Coffee. We are proud to pay our farmers substantially more than the commodity market will ever offer. We have established a relationship with a processor/exporter in Honduras that makes this arrangement possible and economical for the farmers and you the consumer here in the USA.
Our Speciality – Honduran Coffee
While Garden Coffee will always offer great coffees from all over the world, Honduran coffee is our specialty.
The geography of Honduras is ideal for growing coffee. Today Honduras is the seventh largest producer of coffee in the world, behind much larger countries, such as Brazil, Mexico and Colombia. In 2011, Honduras became Central America’s top producer of coffee. Best of all, the high quality of Honduras coffee has allowed it to obtain world-wide recognition, and specialty coffee brands are now actively seeking and purchasing high-quality coffee from Honduras.
Quality Coffee Beans
The elevation. The higher the elevation, the better the coffee. The Honduran government, in an effort to “brand” Honduran coffee, has become more particular about labeling (and monitoring) “strictly high grown” (sometimes called “strictly hard bean”) coffee. The higher the altitude at which it is grown, the denser the bean. Strictly high grown coffee grows more slowly than coffee beans grown at lower altitudes, adding to the price. To meet the SHG (or SHB) criteria, the coffee must be grown at 4900 to 6400 feet.
The soil. The rich volcanic Honduran soils are ideal for quality coffee.
The climate. Honduran coffee grown in shade is superior to the coffee grown in direct sun. Adequate rainfall (Honduras has little irrigation to speak of) is critical for a successful crop.
When a bean is picked. Expensive coffees are pricey for a reason. To reach its fullest maturity, flavor and taste, a bean is best picked at its “red- berry” stage. Since coffee beans don’t ripen uniformly, multiple pickings offer the best coffee bean (rather than a one-time, ‘strip the bush’ approach).
And last, but certainly not least, the very nature or quality of the coffee bush. You reap what you sow. Coffee bushes will bear their first mature fruit 3-5 years after being planted. Bushes may last as long as 15-20 years. One bush will average 1 pound of beans a year.
The Begginings of Coffee from Honduras
Coffee found its way to the new world as early as the early 18th century, arriving first to the island of Martinique, from where it expanded throughout the Caribbean. The island of Hispaniola quickly became an important coffee production center with the French Colony at Haiti providing almost half of the world coffee supply at the time of their independence from France in 1788; however, the production of coffee never recovered after the independence war in this nation, the first Latin American country to be independent from its colonizers. By 1804, there are documents that state that coffee was beginning to be cultivated in the province of Honduras, then part of the vice-royalty of New Spain. During the first half of the 20th century, bananas were the most important cash crop in Honduras, However, during the second half of that century, coffee slowly but steadily increased its share as a cash crop, and by the end of the 20th century coffee from Honduras was as important a gross internal product of Honduras as the banana industry. It was during the first decade of the 21st century when the production of Honduran coffee really began to blossom, turning coffee into the first, and most important, cash crop for Honduras.
When you travel through the Honduran highlands, you are traveling through some of the finest coffee country in the world. Keep your eyes out for Honduran coffee; it is a bush that is often planted in the shade of larger trees. There are more than 90 million Honduran coffee bushes in cultivation.