Humboldt Bay Coffee
El Salvador Pacamara
|Santa Ana growing region, western El Salvador
The moderately dark roast takes on equal billing with the green coffee here. It preserves the essential sweetness of the coffee, but pushes the acidity toward a rich, pungent citrus, a sort of roasty grapefruit, if that can be imagined. The finish is mildly but bracingly astringent.
Pacamara (also known as maragogipe and elephant beans) is a variety of the Coffea arabica species with extremely large, showy beans. A cross between the local variety pacas, itself a selection of bourbon, and the very large-beaned variety Maragogipe, pacamara has been planted widely in El Salvador over the past several decades. Surprisingly, it often produces a better cup than either of its parents, although this sample exhibits one of the weaknesses of the Maragogipe side of the family, a thin, rather lean body. Produced by the Batres farm. Humboldt Bay Coffee Company is a quality-oriented specialty roaster on the scenic north coast of California. Visit
Who Should Drink It
A nice variation on the pungent roast profile favored on California's North Coast, in this case simultaneously sweet, tart and roasty.
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This review originally appeared in the July, 2003 tasting report: Coffee Growers and the Farm-to-Consumer Shortcut