Join Enrique and Alice for a tour of the heart of palm farm behind their home in plush Rancho Quemado. Don't be surprised if bright scarlet macaws fly over head during your visit. Learn the process of planting and harvesting the delicious heart of palm. It's not as easy as it looks! Be careful for sharp thorns on the trees and don't mess around with the machete. Once Enrique has helped you cut a few pieces, take your heart of palm inside to cook with his wife, Alice. Ask about different recipes, such as palm ceviche, heart of palm honey, salad, picadillo, etc. Chop, cook, and eat some heart of palm with your own two hands!
"It’s important to keep money inside the community. It’s important for our family to be able to work at home for the wellbeing of our family and Rancho Quemado."
Over 10 years ago, Alice and her family were working in coffee production. After pregnancy and for health reasons, Alice had to leave this business. That is when she began partnering with her husband to open a joint venture: local cabins and heart of palm production. They value the ability to be independent which comes from owning your own business. Their vision is to be able to help other families generate income and hopefully offer a better quality of life to future employees.
Enrique has been working on the family heart of palm farm for 6 years. He sells the heart of palm to local business, families, and hotels in Drakes Bay.
In August 2010, her family opened Rancho Verde, a local eco-lodge with help from the University of Costa Rica in business trainings. Now, 8 people can spend the night and participate in a tour of their family heart of palm farm. Alice enjoys hosting people and sharing her home with visitors. She enjoys teaching people how to make unique traditional dishes with heart of palm.