Mario Hervas owns the 25-hectare farm called Finca Meridiano, which has 6 hectares planted with coffee. Finca Meridiano is located in the northwestern part of Pichincha Province, Ecuador, next to a small village called Meridiano. The Finca Meridano not only has the ideal conditions for growing coffee, but also has a vital water source, which greatly improves the quality of the coffee produced, and contractes the production of the variety Typica Mejorado.
Mario was an agronomist for 17 years, working with large-scale rose farms throughout Ecuador; he's now applying this knowledge to his coffee farm, and it's safe to say it's an absolute showpiece of innovation. Mario had a hard time identifying the perfect coffee varietal for his farm, and fortunately for us, he took a risk and planted the whole nine hectares with Typica Mejorado, which has an incredibly juicy and floral profile.
This varietal is also one the most culturally and genetically significant in the world; it originates from Ethiopia/Yemen and has been planted the world over. It is a highly problematic varietal to produce, as it is susceptible to all three of the serious coffee ailments - Coffee leaf rust, coffee berry disease, and nematodes. Fortunately, Mario's agronomy background means he is the perfect person to maintain such a varietal, and as you'll be able to tell, it's all been worth it.
The coffee is picked ripe and depulped/demucilaged the same day before being fermented underwater for 30 hours. The cofffee is dried on raised beds in a greenhouse for 20–24 days. Mario hopes to improve his quality even more in coming years by tweaking his drying process, and hopes to feel confident entering his lots into competitions to win awards and earn quality premiums in coming years.