Caramel, refined milk chocolate, tropical and red apple like fruit flavours.
Las Mercedes Estate, El Salvador
How about selected high altitude lots as a world exclusive for the Mule by the farmer Fernando Aguilar & his father Juan (yes, really). How about with the Mule’s approval at the farm? How about making a special commitment to the historical Bourbon varietal that made El Salvador coffees famous around the world, despite being lower yielding and harder to work with – just because it taste better?
Yep, pretty special coffee, pretty special people.
Coffee: El Salvador Las Mercedes Special selection
Farm: Las Mercedes Estate
Producer: Fernando & Juan Aguilar
Varietal(s): Red Bourbon
Location: El Bálsamo
Country: El Salvador
Certification: Rainforest Alliance
Caramel, refined milk chocolate, tropical and red apple like fruit flavours. Medium body, and great overall balance. Excellent single origin filter & espresso and adds sweetness and fruit to espresso blends.
For six generations, the Aguilar family has produced coffee on the shade-rich land on the north-eastern slope of the San Salvador Volcano. The estates cover nearly 160 hectares at altitudes ranging from 1,250 to 1,700 meters (4,100 to 5,577 feet), the top of the farm being unusually high for El Salvador and lending to great coffee growing potential.
Fernando’s vision of utilising the natural advantages and re-committing to varietals that lend to best cup profile over rust resistance and yield, and simply managing the plant stock through good farm work, agronomy investment and experience is a bold one, but managed impeccably well. This has allowed the creation of this world exclusive selection for Grumpy Mule, alongside the emergence of additional very high quality micro-lots.
The coffee has been processed in keeping with ecological friendly processes at the nearby Tuxpal mill. Las Mercedes and sister estate Santa Maria are surrounded by 100 hectares of nature reserve designated as a part of the Meso-American Biological Corridor, including a remarkable ‘mini rainforest’ above the highest coffee areas. Given the importance of the preservation of the forest, the Aguilar family, in conjunction with a local NGO, have two park rangers that look after the protected natural forest year round.
The Aguilar family provides housing, education, and health care to the 20 families who live and work on the estate, rising to 120 during the harvest. A portion of all proceeds go towards a non-profit association, Amigos del Volcán, created to improve the standard of living for the communities that live in the San Salvador Volcano.
The Aguliar’s story is the microcosm of the El Salvador coffee industry, through peaks, troughs, civil war, relocation, peace, return, regrowth, rust and pivot to the highest quality to secure the future. We are proud to be on that journey with them.