A once flourishing coffee producing country, El Salvador is making a strong comeback following years of disruptions resulting from a civil war that all but eliminated the country’s global trade presence. Now the coffee industry in this beautiful country is focused on growth and quality improvement, concentrating efforts on specialty arabica varietals and excellence in production. We are excited to introduce our newest alliances from El Salvador, Finca Nogales and Finca San Rafael, both owned by the family company, Aviles Pacas Hermanos.
Meet Finca San Rafael
There is something particularly special about “Finca San Rafael,” which has been a family estate for more than 100 years. In the 1930’s, Sr. Alberto Pacas Figueroa started experimenting with the varietals of coffee on the San Rafael farm to identify the highest yielding trees. He was most successful with Maragogype, San Ramón Bourbon, Arábico & Robusta and focused his production on these varietals. Productive capacity increased dramatically with some varietals yielding 80 to 100 quintals (100lbs) per manzana (1.68 acres), so much so that the farm began to receive international attention.
In 1956, renowned coffee expert, Mr. Francisco De Sola, visited the farm and was fascinated by the productivity of the San Ramón Bourbon trees on the farm. He was so impressed by these trees, that he called Dr. William Cogwill from the University of Florida to visit and examine the crop. After his visit and continued research, Dr. Cogwill concluded that the new high yielding coffee plants were a mutation from the arábica Hybrid San Ramón Bourbon that originated on Finca San Rafael. They named this new varietal “Pacas” in honor of Mr. Alberto Pacas Figueroa.
This coffee flourishes on the slopes of the active volcano, Ilamatepec, Nahuatl for “Volcano of the old lady. Finca San Rafael consists of Strictly High Grown (SHG) coffee, cultivated at more than 1,400 meters above sea level, under the shade of very large and old trees. Each cherry is carefully picked by hand, washed with rainwater, and dried in the sun on concrete patios. The family is proud to produce the coffee the same manner practiced by their great-grandparents, and to be working with the same local families that have lived on the volcano for many generations.
The family is based in the historic city of Santa Ana, near Ilamatepec, referred to as “Sihuatehuacán” by the ancestors, meaning “city of the sorcerers and wizards.” The Pacas family believes that this same magic is instilled within the passion and care given to the production process. Aviles Pacas Hermanos is a family company that takes great pride and pleasure in caring for their coffee throughout the production lifecycle, allowing them to maintain the highest standards of quality. The family invites you to taste their coffee and hopes you will enjoy!
Size: 25 Manzanas
Varietals: Bourbon and Pacas
Altitude: 1450 MASL
Location: Tutule, La Paz, Honduras
Cupping Notes: Rainier Cherry, White Grape, Demerara Sugar; vanilla / white flowers, nutty, winey, silken mouth feel
We are currently selling San Rafael in 1, 5, and 25 lb quantities online. If you would like to purchase larger quantities (i.e., by the bag or pallet) or would simply like to learn more please Contact Us , we would love to hear from you!