Lake Yojoa ("yo-HO-ah") is one of earth's beautiful places. And Benjamin Paz is one of the coffee world's few celebrity producers/exporters. If we were making a co-sponsered web series with exclusive bonus content about our coffee travels and ethical purchasing, we'd start here. Seriously though, we would.
We'd start with Lake Yojoa. It's at the center of four coffee-producing neighborhoods: Las Flores, El Cielito, El Cedral, and La Leona. These communities sit on the lake region's outskirts, in the high-elevation spots surrounding the crater that cradles Yojoa.
Closer to the lake, the land is home to bird-watchers and fishermen. In our web series, we'd probably stop at one of the lakeside off-road restaurants for some local fried fish and a bottle of Salva Vida. Then we'd truck over to San Vincente, the mill run by Benjamin's family.
We'd enthusiastically point out the tented drying beds and the clean washing tanks, but the film crew would get bored pretty quickly. Maybe we'd be better off in the office, meeting with Benjamin Paz and his neighbors.
To be honest, Benjamin is just a part of this extended-family, multi-generational success. His family spread the word about high-quality, high-return coffee a decade earlier than most. Benjamin is the one who seals the deals, who makes sure those same neighboring farms that started the specialty coffee revolution here a generation ago will continue for another 20 years.