Raw sugars and roasted nut dominate a hot cup, opening up to cola and cocoa notes along the way. Syrupy chocolate takes center stage in the deeper roast levels with hints of dark fruit too. City+ to Full City+. Good for espresso.
Finca Matalapa is a classic estate coffee, long before there were mini-mills and micro-lots. It has a complete independent mill to service the farm, from the tree through wet-processing, patio drying, hulling and preparation, to loading the coffee in jute bags and packing the shipping container. And it's the passion of the owner, Vickie Ann Dalton de Diaz, and the mechanical love of the archaic on the part of her husband that keeps the mill running and the coffee tasting so wonderful! Finca Matalapa is in the Libertad area, not far from the capital of San Salvador, on a west-facing slope ranging from 1200 meters up to the ridge top at 1350 meters. It's a 4th generation coffee estate totalling 120 hectrares and was founded in the late 1800's by Fidelia Lima, great grandmother of Vickie. She maintains 14 acres of virgin tropical forest and keeps her coffee plants shaded with over forty varieties of larger trees. The cup has the character I aspire to find in El Salvador Bourbon-type coffees, though because of the strong winds in the area they find the native Salvador Pacas varietal to fare better in this region. Pacas is a natural mutation of the Bourbon varietal. Interestingly, Puerta Zapa is a "bloque" of the farm, kept separate in processing, but is actually one of the lower areas at Matalapa, not the highest! However, it's historically cupped very strong and we first picked it up after hearing (and of course tasting!) that it was the lot selected as COE contestant a few years back.
The cup shows "classic" El Salvador characteristics of strong brown sugar sweetness and roasted nut. Both fragrance and aroma are brimming with raw sugars and nut/grains, a honey-nut cereal smell, with buttery sweetness. Delicate notes are released on the break, English Breakfast tea and cinnamon to note. Cup characteristics follow suit, City+ has a very nice "daily drinking" coffee flavor - unrefined sugar and roasted nut, a cocoa bittersweetness as it finishes. I think the starting point roast-wise for this coffee is City+, the cup cools so well, cola and cocoa notes, and a clean finish. Full City roasts are loaded with chocolate, thick and sweet, and with hints of plum/dark fruit too. A prime espresso candidate too.