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This SL-28 varietal lot is the product of patient collaboration: we helped our friends at Malacara secure the seed, watched and waited together as it grew, and worked with them for four seasons to make gradual improvements.
  • SKU Los Inmortales El Salvador Limited Release
  • Country El Salvador
  • Region within Country Los Naranjos, Santa Ana
  • Elevation 1200 - 1300 m.a.s.l
  • Farm Finca Malacara
  • Farmer / Producer Name Guillermo "Epe" Alvarez
  • Buyer Andrew Atkinson
  • Cultivar SL-28
  • In Season Yes
  • Direct Trade Yes
  • Single Origin Yes
  • USDA organic No
Direct Trade 1
Single Origin 1
In Season 1
CitrusStone FruitSpice

Los Inmortales El Salvador Limited Release

“Never stop learning. You can always improve.”

These words are proudly displayed in the Intelligentsia Values posted at our roasting facility in Chicago, and it is amazing think that these same words could very well be hanging at Finca Malacara. At least, it would seem so given the continuous improvements we see year over year from Guillermo “Epe” Alvarez on Finca Malacara. There is something special about a partnership in which everyone involved just seems to get each other, and that feeling is inescapable in the long-term partnership between Malacara, El Borbollón and Intelligentsia.

At Malacara, the commitment to constant improvement isn’t just empty words on a sheet of paper, or something mentioned in passing. We experience it every year in the flavors on the cupping table. This year the improvement in the Malacara SL-28 was so clear that Epe took home the first-ever quality improvement award at our second annual Extraordinary Coffee Competition, a quality contest in which the best coffees from our producing partners are cupped side-by-side by our entire Direct Trade network. We call this recognition the Jimmy Butler award. Those familiar with the Butler story will surely understand the reference to a player who, year after year, through sheer work ethic, steadily and methodically honed his skills to eventually become on of the best basketball players of his era. Just as Butler grew his skills season to season, Epe has pushed the quality of this coffee every year through meticulous attention to soil, fertilization, and collaboration with the El Borbollón mill, owned and operated by Epe’s cousin Eduardo “Quincho” Alvarez. The 2018 crop has made the jump to the upper tiers of quality in our line-up after years of work with the plants and processing.

Epe’s commitment to the mantra of continuous improvement leads him to look everywhere for information, techniques, inspiration, and guidance to help push the boundaries of quality on his farm. Coming into the 2018 harvest, Epe looked to replicate both the successes he had seen from trials within his own farm as well as what he had seen and heard of other farms and mills around the world. An immediate area for increased quality was coordination with the mill on the time of day his coffees are processed.

El Borbollón is a quality-focused operation. Its team makes sure its depulpers, cherry reception and fermentation tanks, and other machinery is scrubbed every morning before the day’s harvests begin to arrive, leaving all surfaces sparkling clean for coffee milling. But over the course of even a single busy day, the equipment and the water slowly lose their cleanliness as they are used to process batch after batch of cherry. Epe took note of this, and last year conducted a trial that showed cherry harvested earlier in the day and brought to the mill immediately performed better on the cupping table than cherry that was delivered later in the day.

Through collaboration with El Borbollón, Epe arranged to have his highest-quality coffees harvested and delivered to the mill immediately so they were first in the queue for milling on sparkling clean machinery, and the first to land on the drying beds early the next morning. This not only ensured the cleanest processing and fermentation, but also altered the drying through varied heat and sun exposure versus a coffee processed at night. The cumulative effect of subtle changes like these over the years have helped push the Malacara micro-lots to new heights this year.

We are extremely excited to bring to you the 2018 crop of Finca Malacara’s SL-28, which represents the fifth consecutive year of this Intelligentsia exclusive.

Espresso

Espresso

All home and commercial espresso machines.

Turkish Grind

Turkish Grind

If you need a little bit coarser grind for your espresso machine or utilize this favorite preparation in eastern Europe.

Stovetop Espresso

Stovetop Espresso

Moka pots and stovetop espresso kettles need a very fine grind.

Cone Filter - Paper

Cone Filter - Paper

Most automatic and electric brewers utilize this grind setting.

Cone Filter - Gold

Cone Filter - Gold

Automatic brewers with reusable mesh filters, or a Kone manual brewing insert.

Universal

Universal

If you're buying for a friend, or are just not sure - this is a good grind for most drip brewers.

Technivorm

Technivorm

We found this excellent automatic brewer needed a bit coarser grind than other cone filter brewers.

Vacuum Brewer

Vacuum Brewer

For those with an electric or flame-heated vacuum brewer.

Flat Bottom - Paper

Flat Bottom - Paper

Any basket-style brewer, including automatic and Kalita wave manual brewing.

Flat Bottom - Gold

Flat Bottom - Gold

For automatic brewers with basket-style reusable filters.

French Press

Hario Dripper

Manual pourover cone brewing is a simple, no frills way of brewing.

Grind Type

French Press

A classic of immersion brewing. Select this grind for perfect classical preparation.

Chemex

Chemex

The iconic Chemex, this grind provides a perfectly paired offering for the special filters made for this brewer.

Percolator

Percolator

Our coarsest grind, this also provides a good pre-ground solution for cold brew at home.

Whole Bean

Whole Bean

For those with a grinder at home, we love freshly ground coffee! We prefer burr grinders for a more even brew.