This is the extremely rare Pacamara varietal from El Salvador, and not just that, but it is from the legendary Siberia Estatein the Santa Ana growing region.
First: the varietal. Pacamara was born in El Salvador in the 1950's as a cross between the enormous "elephant bean" Maragogype and Pacas which is within the Bourbon family. Both varietals are low-yielding and harder to grow than modern hybrids, so Pacamara is a rarely grown bean. Pacamara's magic was discovered and released in the early 1990's after 30+ years of experiments by the El Salvadorian Institute of Coffee Research. The bean is so large that it is too big for sorting by coffee screens. Instead of being a 16/17, or 17/18, these would be screened as a 20/21 if such a screen existed.
The farm: Siberia Estate was named as such because it is 4000 feet up a treacherous mountain, making it remote and difficult to reach. They have been growing coffee here since 1870, and it is now being farmed by the 4th generation of the same family that founded it. At that time, there were no roads or paths into the mountains here, and the farmer walked up and down the mountain several times those first few years.
It is super nice coffee -- not only in the way the beans look, but how it is smooth, sweet, aromatic, and oh-so-drinkable -- a coffee that no one would ever turn down -- but with subtle flavor notes that you don't really think about but stick with you long after the mug is empty. We are roasting this under the same profile as a Costa Rican (this is a washed coffee, and roasting it any lighter as if it were an Ethiopian is going to give you a sour taste) This Full City roast (407 degree bean temp on our roaster) gives it the most complexity. It has a nice thick full body, smooth and creamy in the mouth. It has a floral spring day aroma. It has pink grapefruit in the beginning, and chocolate in the finish. A lot of complexity in the middle, with subtle red fruit and melon also catching our attention. The most satisfying part is probably the creamy body coupled with the cocoa at the finish. If you take the roast darker, or even all the way up to the verge of 2nd cracks, it is still a smooth drinkable enjoyable coffee in every way, but the complexities which are already subtle, almost disappear. It is such a hard, dense, large bean that you absolutely can roast it darker yet, well into the 2nd cracks, and it is still remarkably smooth, sweet, and clean tasting coffee.
This is a coffee that will spoil you. You don't realize how good it really is, until it's gone and you go back to a coffee you used to enjoy and discover your old friend isn't as interesting as you had recalled.
US Arrival: August 2017
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