Máragogype (Elephant Beans):
Máragogype (also called elephant bean) is a variety of arabica that produces an extremely large, rather porous bean. It is a mutant that spontaneously appeared in Brazil, almost as though the giant of Latin-America thought regular beans were too puny and produced something in its own image. It was first discovered growing near the town of Máragogype, in the north-eastern state of Bahia. Subsequently it has been carried elsewhere in Latin America and generally adopts the flavour characteristics of the soil to which it has been transplanted.
Most experts recognise it as one of the finest coffee beans in the world with the main claim that it en-dowers a much heavier body than a comparable arabica coffee from the same region. I believe that it produces a fuller body and gives the strong sweat aromas while producing a less acidic cup than other traditional arabica varieties. This strengthens the cup when added in graduated amounts 5 to 35%. The bean in the green state is not stable and needs to be stored in the parchment to retain the bright green colours, otherwise it tends to whiten quickly but regains it’s consistency when roasted. These problems along with low productivity from the extra large trees has discouraged farmers from replanting Máragogype, and it has become a rather rare, difficult-to-find coffee. We ship our Máragogype in GrainPro bags to maintain humidity conditions to lessen the whitening and destablizing effects. Most Máragogypes sold in North America are grown in Mexico, Nicaragua, or Guatemala. Those from Chiapas, Mexico, and the Coban district of Guatemala have the best reputation.
Máragogype is a romantic’s coffee curiosity, and deserves respect on that ground alone. It is considered a phantom bean but we are the ghost busters. We have been sourcing Máragogype in Los Altos de Chiapas, and have localised a number of Organic Certified Estates. For those aficionados who want the impressively soft and full cup obtained from the dramatically large bean we can supply now in quantity. We however still recommend to blend the márago with our Strict High Grown Arabica Typica to give a the required acidez and consistent cup quality.
We have included máragogype in our Gourmet blend and Premium blend for the last three years with success. We have now localised higher quality sources and have perfected selection t0 give 86 to 89 SCAA rating. Our +20 screen size is already sold for next season and we continue to use the SC19 in our blends.