Three Varietals, One Incredible Experience: The Philippines’ Finca de Garces Varietal Box

Apr 11, 2024

A place nestled deep in Bukidnon's Mt. Kalatungan, the Philippine Coffee Quality Competition 2023 champion Finca de Garces stands proud.


What began as a response to the challenges posed by the pandemic has turned into a venture of discoveries. From starting a pandemic project to becoming one of the country’s best coffee producers, the Garces family offers an inspiring history alongside their award-winning coffees.

PCQC 2023 champs Garces family with their plaque

When Covid-19 made the “new normal” seem impossible for everyone , couple Manolito (aka Lito) and Gemma Garces started coffee farming as a family project during the pandemic.

This allowed them to not only adapt to the challenging times but also cultivate their shared interest in coffee, bringing them closer together as a family while discovering a new passion. Little did they know that this would be the humble beginning for Finca de Garces.

Team Finca de Garces

As the family-run Finca de Garces began to flourish, they were then joined by Ramil (current farm processing manager) and Novie Valerio who are experts in coffee farming on the ground fieldwork and post-harvest processing. Together, this power team combined their expertise to cultivate and produce exceptional coffee beans.

Finca de Garces Processing Manager Ramil Valerio

Finca de Garces Varietal Box

This April 2024, Finca de Garces releases an experience box that consists of three different coffees and varietals: Catimor Honey, Bourbon Honey, and the Ethiopian Landrace Honey.

1. Finca de Garces Catimor Honey

The Catimor varietal is a hybrid between Caturra (an Arabica species) and Timor (a Robusta species). Due to its Robusta qualities, Catimor is often shunned in the specialty coffee world. However, FDG’s earlier lot of Catimor Natural placed first at the 2023 Northern Mindanao Coffee Quality Competition. This proves that no varietal is ever too inferior for a farmer’s desire to bring out its best.

2. Finca de Garces Bourbon Honey

A natural mutation of the Typica varietal, Bourbon (pronounced as boor-bon) is generally a tall and slender plant. Similar to many other Arabica coffee varietals, it flourishes in elevated altitudes and presents a unique set of challenges for growers due to its susceptibility to plant diseases.

3. Finca de Garces Ethiopian Landrace Honey

Formerly known as the Sweet Coffee varietal, the Ethiopian Landrace varietal that grows in Finca de Garces has traces to the Heirloom coffee in Ethiopia (confirmed by World Coffee Research.) This was also the same varietal that made Finca de Garces champion at the Philippine Coffee Quality Competition 2023. The Ethiopian Landrace shares striking resemblances to the revered gesha variety, showcasing floral notes, balanced flavors, and a harmonious sweetness.

Honey Process

Finca de Garces uses meticulous processes to ensure the coffee bean’s quality and distinctiveness. These varietals go through a processing method called Honey Process:

Step 1
Sort: Cherries are sorted in quality by size and density.

Step 2
Depulp: The coffee cherries are depulped using a machine. While the pulp and outer skin is removed, the mucilage (sticky, sugary substance) is left on the seed.

Step 3
Dry: The coffee seeds with mucilage are now left to dry on raised beds.

Step 4
Ferment: Fermentation starts to take place as the coffee seeds are drying. Raking is a must to keep the seeds from spoiling.

Step 5
Hull: Once dried, the seeds are then again run through a machine to be hulled. This process strips the dried mucilage and the parchment (thin layer similar to a peanut’s) off from the seeds.

A Cup with a Story

The award-winning Finca de Garces is nationally-recognized to produce exceptional coffees, and this Varietal Box adds up to the million reasons why this family-run farm is changing the Philippine coffee game.

The Philippines Finca de Garces Varietal Box is now ready for you to experience. Order here.




Nicole Jean Calago, Intern