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El Salvador - Finca Los Andes: Washed, Bourbon

Finca Los Andes is located among the protected areas of Santa Ana Volcano, at norwest side of the National Park “Los Andes”. The Los Andes farm is 1 hour from the City of Santa Ana, at an average altitude of 1720 metres above sea level in the Canton of Palo Campana, located in the heart of the volcano known as Ilamatepec and surrounded by the National Park, which honors the name of the farm. The farms in this region are very fortunate to have a micro climate with unique flora, fauna and to be surrounded by dense forests of Cypress and Pines owned by The National Park Los Andes. The forrest creates a natural barrier and help generate optimal conditions in the area.

Ernesto bought the Los Andes farm three years ago, the plants have an average age of 45 years, 35% of the plant stock is Kenya SL28 variety and 65% Red Bourbon. In his first visit to the property, Ernesto was impressed and happy to see that 35% was SL-28,  according to the locals, this variety was introduced by Family De Sola roughly 40-45 years ago around the National Park Los Andes. Los Andes has became an important part of quality improving projects that Ernesto has initiated, as a seed source for harvesting the rare SL28 varietal.

Ernesto has started a reforestation plan on several of his farms with the SL28 variety, Red and Orange Bourbón with similar percentages for exploiting the benefits of these three excellent varieties. For that crop he try to further improve the process of gathering and washing, applying strict quality control. The coffee was only picked using cherries harvested at their optimal maturity, two manual selections were made to remove any imperfections or damage grain before being pulped, then the coffee cherries moved to the San Carlos farm where the pulping process began.

The pulping process begins immediately after the coffee is received, then moved to stacks of fermentation which lasts for about 16 hours or until its ideal point of fermentation is reached. Finally, washing stations with clean fresh water are used to loosen the mucus. This year the farm implemented the use of African drying beds or Perihuelas, drying coffee to obtain a 11.00% moisture level. The coffee is stored in cellars on the estate to ensure and maintain the quality of the coffee until it is shipped.

Ernesto and the Los Andes workers have invested much time to each stage of the coffee processing, resulting in a cup that delivers exceptional characteristics and clarity. 

  1. Country: El Salvador
  2. Farm: Los Andes
  3. Farmer: Juan Jose Ernesto Menendez Arguello
  4. City: Santa Ana
  5. Farm size: 18.2 hectares
  6. Altitude: 1720 m.a.s.l.
  7. Variety: Bourbon
  8. Process: Washed