El Salvador Finca Santa Petrona Washed Pacamara
So in the cup expect some of the sweet milk chocolate from the Bourbon, but then you get the complex acidity of red apples all mixed up with a massive creamy mouth-filling banana and cherryawesomeness.
So this is the second year of working with Santa Petrona and it's part of the bounty I brought back from my trip in January 2012, the aim of which was to find some new and exciting things for Has Bean. I also visited them again this year as I had so much fun with the guys last time, and spent the day on the farm.
It had not been in my plans to visit this farm the first time I went there, although I had planned to spend a day with my friends Federico and Lily Bolanos. They kindly arranged for me to go for a picnic on Lily's father's farm in the Ilamatepeque mountains. The farm is situated in a part of the mountains I know well; for those who remember El Retio of a couple of years ago, Lily's father's farm is right next door to it (shares the same access road).
The farm was a new one to me and not one I had come across. I spent the day getting more and more interested in the farm; seeing the facilities, meeting some of the pickers, and seeing what great work they were doing. Lily and Federico have been helping her father and brother with some ideas of what the specialty market want and need from producers.
I also got to go to the mill, which is on the main road from Santa Ana City to San Salvador. Here again I saw organised, clean, and well run facilities, and the whole thing made for a super interesting free gift tour of a new farm.
So at the end of the tour I secretly asked Lily's brother (also called Federico - can you keep up) for a sample, and thought no more of it. Upon returning to the UK I found this sample in my bag, and although I was super impressed with the setup, I remained sceptical that a farm could just appear like this to me without any planning and ground work beforehand.
You can guess the rest as it's here, and I'm very excited by the coffee and pleased to share it.
Located on the Ilamatepeque Volcano in the Western Part of the Santa Ana District in El Salvador, the farm was founded by the Pacas Diaz Family in 1927, now in its 6th generation. The farm is spread over 25.25 manzanas – which is 17.67 hectares of land - with varietals of Red Bourbon (80%), Pacas (15%), Pacamara (5%), and is at an altitude of 1450 meters above sea level. This coffee is 100% fully washed Pacamara, and is hand picked and dried on raised African beds. When I told friends in the industry I was visiting El Salvador in January last year, one openly laughed at me that the coffees wouldn't be ready / finished, and asked why I was going so early. Now finding coffees like this, I do exactly the same. You need some foresight and you need to understand the coffees will improve, but the best part is you find unique and special lots like this.
Well this was the reason; I was the first to cup it, and the first to offer to buy it. Other buyers turned up in February offering to buy, but it had a big sold sign on it. It's a tiny lot, but they told me last year they had planted some more near to the house on the highest part of the farm. We have nicknamed it Finca Has Bean, and I cannot wait to see how this coffee develops.
So in the cup expect some of the sweet milk chocolate from the Bourbon, but then you get the complex acidity of red apples all mixed up with a massive creamy mouth-filling banana and cherry awesomeness.
Chocolate, red apple, cherry, creamy banana mouthfeel