This coffee is grown on Finca Lemus Bella Vista, located in the municipality of Concepción de Ataco within the department of Ahuachapán, El Salvador. It’s a 37 acre farm owned by Thelma de Gutierrez and managed by her husband, José Enrique Gutiérrez. This husband and wife team has used their experience as third generation coffee producers to improve the productivity and health of the farm, which includes the production and application of microbial compost teas on the farm. In the last two years, the couple has also diversified the farm with the production of beans, which ensure food security for the family and also act as nitrogen fixers that promote the coffee plants health and cherry production.
This mixed variety lot is sun-dried on combination of patio and raised beds, after processing. The hybrid “Honey” process, not at all dissimilar to a pulped natural or semi-washed, involves mechanically removing the coffee cherry skins by a depulper, but some of the flesh of the fruit is allowed to remain on the seed. Then, rather than fermenting in a tank to remove the mucilage, the coffee is taken directly into the sun to dry. The result is an extraordinarily flavorful coffee that retains some of the nicest qualities of both the fully washed and cherry-dried processes.
Super clean and bright; soft fruit, citrus and floral tones are right upfront and on the stronger side. The slow dry honey process does add a little fruitier tone to the cup but its mellow and by no means ferment like the Ethiopians. By taste I would think this to be a washed coffee, by the looks, a natural processed. The slow dry really give this cup a sweet front end to it and awesome complexities. With the little higher acidity, this is a great coffee to play around with roast level.
If you want to see a stellar high rated industry cup, you have to stick within the lighter roasts. The clean acidity and soft fruit will win over light to medium roast fans easily. Careful, with the hybrid processing these beans have a higher chaff content. Tasty cup at a medium to dark roast, brings out much more body and a sweeter caramel/chocolate cup profile with a little soft fruit tone. Equally as good but covers up the brighter depth of the cup. With the right roast for the taste buds, this is a cup everyone will love.