The day I arrived in Costa Rica, I asked the driver transporting me to the hotel for a recommendation for good place to get fresh brewed coffee. Costa Rican coffee is known for its high quality and rich flavor due to the nutrients found in the volcanic soil and growing environment. I only found out about this while researching the trip. If you’re a coffee enthusiast, you should give Costa Rican coffee a try if you haven’t already done so. The driver referred me to a corner coffee shop inside the Central Market (Mercado Central) in San Jose, but he could not recall the name of the place.
About a week later, I went on a morning private tour around San Jose. After a bit of sight seeing and punching a rubber tree for fun, the guide took me to the Central Market for coffee. As we made our way through the busy and tight corridors of shops, we ended up at Cafe Central. It was located at the corner of a market section, and I had a feeling this was the place the driver was referring to. The beans are roasted on site and as a fresh batch of roasted beans were spewing out of the roaster, the roast master scooped up a batch and walked it over for me to smell.
We ordered the house brew and the guide requested the barista to brew the coffee with a chorreador, a Costa Rican coffee maker.
It reminded me of the Chemex and Hario drip-brewing methods. A cloth filter that looks like a well-worn, dirty sock is used. The guide also asked the barista to mix the fresh ground coffee in the hot water before it was poured into the chorreador for a stronger brew. And yes, it was strong.
I brought five bags of coffee back to the states for myself and friends.