This Pacamara lot from Metapán, El Salvador, marks the inauguration of Four Barrel’s Central American direct sourcing program. La Selecta growers and producers receive quality-based premium pricing and on-the-ground support from Four Barrel employee Alejandro Valiente.
Alejandro’s work in Central America goes far beyond his own Metapán region, but we’re introducing the fruits of his labor with this selection. Alejandro has has always shared our appetite for unusual varieties like Pacamara. Pacamara plants may not be the highest-yielding or easiest to farm, but their unusual and magical flavors are worth the trouble.
Pacamara is a Salvadoran cross between two naturally occurring Arabica mutations, Pacas and Maragogype. It’s easy to identify Pacamara whole beans by their huge size. It’s equally easy to identify brewed cups of Pacamara by their trademark heavy body, redolent of sweet fruit.
If you’ve never tried Pacamara before, this is the perfect place to start. For one thing, La Selecta was grown right in Pacamara’s natural home, El Salvador’s northern mountains. It’s clean, it’s cool, and it’s a mile above sea level, where Pacamara thrives.
Some roasters kvetch that Pacamara’s unusual size and density make it a tricky bean to roast. Our co-workers Ryan and Sarah Jane, on the other hand, have been roasting big-bean varieties like Pacamara on our 1958 Probat for years now. You--and Alejandro’s farming colleagues--can rest assured that every unique note of kumquat and cream shines through under their skillful watch.