Alejo Castro Kahle is a descendant of coffee pioneers in Costa Rica. He is committed to honoring the legacy of his ancestors through the continued pursuit of their aim — producing excellent coffees and making the family's name known for it worldwide.
To ensure consistent quality and make way for improvement every year, he is involved in every step of production, from the establishment of the coffee plants, cherry harvest, fermentation and drying, until dry milling and loading the greens into containers for export.
With 200 years of heritage knowledge in coffee, Alejo is vocal about soil health as the cornerstone of cultivating coffee trees that yield cherries with well-developed beans having the potential for complex flavors. He implements only processing innovations that preserve the integrity of variety while highlighting its most desirable attributes and reflecting its provenance.
Volcan Azul is the flagship estate of the Castro Kahle family. It spans 300 hectares on the slopes of the Poas Volcano, of which 60 hectares are planted, and 200 hectares are dedicated to conservation. There are 40+ varieties grown on the farm, of which Geisha, Typica, SL 28, Caturra, and San Isidro have won at the COE.
Typica is one of the original varieties grown at the Castro Kahles’ estates. Because of its potential for very good cup quality, producers, such as Volcan Azul, dedicate plots for its cultivation in spite of the tendency for lower yields and susceptibility to adverse elements. It is generally known to cup as a straightforward, clean, crisp, and sweet coffee.
Through the Warm Anaerobic process, aromatic floral hints and fruity qualities were brought out, along with an enhanced body. The cherries were placed in sealed tanks smaller than the standard used for their other anaerobically processed lots. Time, temperature, acidity, and Brix levels were monitored throughout the fermentation and maintained within pre-defined parameters.
With the tanks directly exposed to sunlight, higher temperatures spurred the fermentation in such a way that intensified the inherent sweet and fruity attributes most desired in this variety.