||El Salvador Finca Shangrilá Bourbon Cup of Excellence 2009
This is a Cup of Excellence coffee that we bought a limited amount of in conjunction with a buying group. It was a great Bourbon lot from a dual farm entry of Shangrilá and San Jose.
Juan Carlos Gregg Meza is the owner of these two beautiful farms that are located in the midst of the Apaneca-Ilamatepec Mountain Range. San Jose Farm was inherited in 1997 by Juan Carlos from his grandfather, and therefore Juan Carlos took this great treasure with profound responsibility and passion.
The 3.5 Ha of San Jose is mainly cultivated with the Bourbon variety, an heirloom variety in El Salvador, to which the refined characteristics in the cup are attributed. Due to its size, San Jose receives a garden-like management all year round, from agricultural activities during the rainy season to harvesting in the dry season. All of these activities are performed by an experienced team of farm workers guided by Cruz Aguilar, the farm's administrator, who has been working at this particular farm for over 15 years.
Shangrilá, just like San Jose, is small in size but great in ecological value. It is a genuine ecologic bastion for the air purification, water reserve and fauna/flora protection it provides. The name of this farm is so appropriate, since according to literature commentaries, 'Shangri-La' refers to a mystical and harmonious valley used by Jimmy Hilton in its book 'Lost Horizon', and it has become synonymous with any earthly paradise, which is exactly what this farm is!
Shangrila is 100% cultivated with the Bourbon variety and its 10.5Ha. receives careful management all year round. The farm manager, Cruz, is a key player, according to Juan Carlos, in coordinating and performing environmentally friendly activities, like the minimum use of agrochemicals and the protection of native fauna and flora species. Other great attributes of this farm are the spectacular views and its wonderful microclimate, which is cool all year round, about 50ºF in average. The farm also serves as a natural shelter for native fauna species such as armadillos, deer, raccoons, and other small mammals.
I normally agree with the notes from the Cup of Excellence jury and can see many of the descriptors they use in respect of the coffee, but this time I don't. I get a huge body, not so much fruit acidity, but I do agree with the dried fruit and plum like tones. This is amazing espresso because of the controlled, tight, virtually non-existent acidity and massive body.
Farm: San Jose / Shangrila
Farmer: Juan Carlos Gregg Meza
City: Apaneca, Ahuachapán
Farm Size: 14.00 Hectares
Coffee growing area: 14.00 Hectares
Altitude: 1400 masl
Processing System: Washed & Sun-dried
Coffee Varieties: Bourbon
Average Annual Rainfall: 2,450 mm
Average Temperature: 20 ºC
Type of Soil: Clay loam
Type of Shade: Mainly Ingas, cypress, copalchi, etc.
Annual Production: 125 bags (60kg)
Mill and company where lot was process: Tres Ríos Mill, Exportadora El Volcán
International Jury Score: 86.15
Top Jury Descriptions: Aroma/flavor green grapes, peach, raspberry black berry, cranberry, honey aroma, milk chocolate, dried fruit, plum Acidity fresh, lively, Notes Well balanced
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