EL CARMEN, El Salvador ESPRESSO creamy, chocolate, biscuit, red grape

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EL CARMEN, El Salvador ESPRESSO creamy, chocolate, biscuit, red grape

from 7.50

Producer: Fernando Alfaro & family

Region: Ahuachapan, El Salvador
Altitude: 1300 masl

Varietal: Red Bourbon
Process: Fully washed & sun-dried

Cup profile: Creamy & rich, chocolate, biscuit, red grape

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El Carmen Estate is located at 1,300m above sea level in El Salvador’s Apaneca-Ilamatepec mountain range, one of Central America’s prime specialty coffee producing areas. The estate has been farmed by the Alfaro family for over a century. As well as growing and processing their own coffees, the estate also processed coffees of neighbouring farms in the area, always with the same meticulous attention to detail and to each producer's specifications. 

El Carmen lies in the heart of El Salvador’s main ‘protected highway’ of forest, a part of the Mesoamerican Biological Corridor System that stretches all the way from Mexico down to Panama.

In El Salvador, where more than 80% of the country’s coffee is produced under shade, this eco-system is based mainly in the coffee forest. For this reason, coffee farms such as El Carmen play a vital role as a sanctuary for hundreds of the migratory and native bird species found in this part of the world.

The estate’s coffee is produced under approximately 60% shade cover, which is required for the coffee to ripen evenly. Prior to the rainy season, shade trees are then pruned to about 40% shade to allow the access of light necessary for new foliage growth.

During the harvest, the red, orange and yellow Bourbon cherries are hand-picked only when perfectly ripe and de-pulped the same day. The varietals are processed separately. The beans are then naturally fermented, washed with pure spring water, and sun-dried on clay patios. The coffee is stored in parchment in wooden silos to protect the freshness of each individual bean, left to ‘rest’ for a minimum of 60 days under controlled conditions to reach uniform humidity and colour. Finally, the beans are prepared and all defects removed and screened to uniform size.

We've had the privilege of visiting the El Carmen estate and meeting Fernando in January this year as the harvest was about to begin.


We were really impressed with the incredible level of organisation and attention to detail in every step of the way from caring for their beautiful Bourbon plantations to processing and drying. This only reinforced our confidence ini purchasing this coffee again this year and offering it to your all as a delicious, sweet and creamy house espresso option.