El Salvador Loma La Gloria
El Salvador is a country enjoying a coffee renaissance. The civil war has been over for nearly three decades and subsequent decades of violence has begun to wane. Leaf rust is ever present, but renovation strategies have curbed the crisis. And everybody who manages a family owned coffee estate possesses the know-how drawn from three or four generations experience. There are simply no limits to the ways this generation of El Salvadoran producers has embraced the specialty coffee market with the duality of tradition and innovation. This is exactly the way Anny Ruth Pimentel has managed her family’s estate in El Boqueron on the Quezaltepec Volcano. She continues to cultivate traditional varieties like Pacamara and Bourbon and relies on shade trees to protect the ecology of the estate. During the harvest a great deal of care and focus is dedicated to picking the best quality of cherries based on brix measurements. The harvest is so precise that every lot can be traced to a specific section of the estate. Anny Ruth also takes steps, uncommon in El Salvador, to control the entire post-harvest operation all the way through exporting and marketing. At the base of the estate she has a fully equipped mill called Loma La Gloria. Using recycled water, the harvested cherries are floated to extract under ripe, damaged and less dense beans, but because access to water is so limited, all of the coffee is processed either as a honey or a natural and then expertly dried on clay patios and raised beds. Loma la Gloria has a cupping lab where every lot is tasted before milling, which also takes place at Loma La Gloria.