El Salvador Finca Alaska Natural Bourbon 2018


Bean name El Salvador Finca Alaska Natural Bourbon 2018
Country El Salvador
Region Apaneca-Ilamatepec Mountain Range
Other info Varietal: Bourbon


A coffee that I first fell in love with waaaaaaay back in 2007 is thankfully back for another year. After many years without it, I was massively excited to get this farm and coffee back two years ago, and I'm even more excited to be able to offer this coffee once again.

Finca Alaska is located just one hour from Santa Ana city. It's on the northwest slopes of the Santa Ana volcano, which is one of the most amazing coffee growing areas in El Salvador. It is owned by Ernesto Menéndez of La Ilusion fame – or Neto, as we like to call him! This is a name you should be familiar with by now, because I think you know how much I love the coffee that this amazing man grows. I often get asked what my favourite coffee of all time is and I will never say exactly (although my friends know the true answer), but I always narrow it to three coffees; one of them is definitely from Neto.

This is a naturally processed version of a coffee that we first saw back in 2007 (check out 2007 Steve and Neto in the pictures!) and I was desperate to have a long-term relationship with the grower. Due to some politics and miscommunication, it slipped through our fingers. The following year we bought coffee from La Ilusion, but it always felt like there was a piece of the jigsaw missing. I managed to get my hands on the slightly more regular washed lot from Finca Alaska four years later in 2011, and another four years later in 2015 I did it again. Now here we are in 2018, and we have the regular washed lot and also this natural! I will keep doing my best to not let it be four years until we see Finca Alaska again, I promise.

In the cup this distinct coffee is a lot like a bowl of Auntie's trifle. Raspberry jelly, creamy finish, hint of booze, a sponge sweetness and a complex fruit acidity. Party time!

Country: El Salvador
Region: Apaneca-Ilamatepec mountain range
Nearest city: Santa Ana
Farm: Finca Alaska
Farmer: Juan Jose Ernesto Menéndez Argüello
Altitude: 1,620 m.a.s.l.
Farm size: 3.15 hectares
Coffee growing area: 3.15 hectares
Variety: Bourbon
Processing system: Natural
Type of shade: Pepeto peludo, gravileo, cypress, copalchi, etc.
Average annual rainfall: 2,100 mm
Average temperature: 18º C
Type of soil: Sandy loam
Fauna: Armadillos, torogoz, agouti, snakes, squirrels, orioles, deer, hawks and rabbits
GPS coordinates:
Latitude: N 13º 52’ 22.2’’
Longitude: W 89º 36’ 22.6’’

Roasting Information
Medium dark - take this just up to the cusp of second crack then drop so you're getting the very first pops of second as the coffee hits the cooling tray.

"Quick Look" Guide
Auntie's trifle, raspberry jelly, creamy, boozy, sponge.

Note: Cupping Score for Sweetness is actually 6.5 & Balance is 7.5, not as above (software limitation, allows whole numbers only)

Cupping notes

Clean cup 7/8
Sweetness 7/8
Acidity 7/8
Mouthfeel 6/8
Flavour 7/8
Aftertaste 6/8
Balance 7/8
Overall 7/8
Correction +36
Total 90

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