... and if you do, this coffee is for you! Full of big bright orangey notes and a delicious chocolate finish, the El Cipres from El Salvador does not disappoint. It is a hug in a mug!
The El Cipres Estate:
Located on the north slopes of the Picacho Volcano in the Baisamo-Quezaltapec coffee region in the municipality of Nejapa, Department of San Salvador, the El Cipres Estate has been owned by the same family sicne 1880 when it was bought by Dr Emilio Alvarez Lalide after the family emigrated to El Salvador from Colombia. They brought with them an ancestry and knowledge of coffee production. The Estate is now run by the Alvares Gallardo family who took over in 1992 bringing a ew passion and dedication to the farm, working hard to achieve RFA certification as well as improving all aspects of the estate.
Stunning views at the El Cipres Estate
The Estate is made up of 90 hectares of coffee producing land and 5 hectares of natural forest allowing the wildlife to flourish. Starting at 1070 masl the farm is a long thin strip which climbs up to 1800 masl, producing 3000 bags annually. The Estate has re-introduced the old practice of agobia cutting and growing which has significantly helped to improve yield - the trees are bent over and tied to the ground to keep producing whilst new shoots grow vertically.
There is a strong family and social aspect to the El Cipres Estate. As well as being RFA certified, the family works hard to ensure all workers are treated with respect and dignity. There is a permanent staff who live on the farm whose food is subsidised all year round. In the houses they have also provided new efficient reduced smoke cooking stoves as well as using volcanic stones as a filter of waste water to reduce pollutants reaching the soils.
A female coffee picker at work
During the picking season, the workers receive meals and coffee each day and a nutritional drink every other day to help promote good health. The farm also supports the local school which neighbours the farm, subsiding the teaching assistant there. They have helped with the supply of a computer as well as providing sports clothes for the games classes.
El Pepeton - the area this coffee comes from on the estate
A very successful coffee cherry harvest!
This is the parcel of land of 7 hectares sat between 1350-1500 masl situated just above the central region of the estate. The coffee is picked and separated before it is delivered to the El Borbollon mill located in Santa Ana where it is pulped to remove the skin of the cherry from the beans. The beans are then moved in channels of fermentation tanks where they will rest for 13 to 15 hours - this process allows naturally present bacteria and microbes to break down the sugars and alcohols in the mucilage of the beans. They are then washed before being transported to the drying patio where they are dried for a period of 8-10 days.
(Information and images courtesy of Falcon Specialty)