Peru - Finca Santa Estela 2018

Origin: Peru

Region: Villa Rica

Farm: Finca Santa Estela

Type: Criollo/Trinatario

Certifications: Direct Trade

Year: 2018

Flavor Notes:

This is reasonably quiet and tame hinting a Criollo stock. The aroma puts me in mind of a lightly hopped summer ale. The chocolate level is moderate and malty backed by a touch hop and grapefruit bitterness and lively lemon zest astringency. These are balanced out by a brazil nut and sweetened lemon. The flavor leaves a clean and crisp impression.

I have listed this as Direct Trade but for that in essence that is what it is. That said I did not purchase this bean myself directly but instead from a small chocolate maker who has a wonderful working relationship with two farms in Peru. They slightly over bought and knowing I often offer small lots of quality beans offered them to me. I am very glad they did. To quote:

The cacao comes from two different single estate family owned farms that we import the cacao directly from.
We have had full chain of custody of the product from the farms to our warehouse, with the exception of the time when it was in customs.
It is not certified organic. However, we selected these farmers for their outstanding sustainability practices. We frequently visit the farms and the workers are treated well and humanely.

Due to the relatively light flavor profile I am going to suggest keeping your EOR temperature 240-250 F with a Development phase 2.5-3 minutes. Just fast enough to develop the flavor there but not so much as to cause bitterness. Drawing this out in the finishing phase is going to be a double edged sword. Too long (over 5 minutes) and you are going to loose some acidity but it needs to be drawn out some so the heat has time to fully penetrate the bean. Not long enough and you may get extra astringency. You are going to have to experiment a bit to find your own personal sweet spot.

That said, 12/15/19 @ 250 was the profile for the notes here.