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Dean Stevens

Izotalillo Whole Bean Coffee

two bags of Izotalillo coffee side by side with labels - see body for info

For over thirty years, I have had a deep friendship with a mountain village in Northern El Salvador, near the Honduras border. My first encounter with them was soon after they returned from a decade of exile after their village had been destroyed during the bitter conflict that visited this region during the '80s. I've been able to watch Izotalillo, during these decades, develop a respectable harvest of remarkably delicious and high scoring gourmet coffee. About ten years ago, I decided to take on importing quantities of bean from this hard to get place, and bringing it to the US for consumption and sale.

I am no connosieur or snob of the gourmet bean, but I know what I like. My wife and I go to bed dreaming about the fresh brew that awaits us in the morning. And a bunch of loyal Farmers' Market customers feel the same way. I am at the Roslindale Farmers' Market every Saturday from June to November. I call it "my other church"... it's a lovely, lively parade of people, their kids, their dogs, conversations and acquaintances with other vendors.

We presently import about 3 tons of coffee each year, and roast it by the sack. A fresh bean and a fresh roast are the keys to great coffee. It also helps to have known the farmers for 30 years. All proceeds are plowed back into improving infrastruture of coffee growing and processing. The project has also paid for the universtiy education of Guadalupe Chavez Recinos, one of the young farmers, who also took on high school and university. She is the first one in the village past sixth grade, and now by sheer grit and tenacity, fighting extreme odds and obstacles, is a credentialed school teacher, starting her career in education. We are so so proud of Guadalupe!

I sell at Farmers' Market. I also deliver coffee in our neighborhood and vicinity (4 pound minimum). If I had the ambition I'd be a hell of a guy (thanks Geoff Bartley, for that line), and would grow this into something big. I've got it right where I want it: coffee for me, my family, my friends. Let me know if you want to know more, purchase some, or travel to El Salvador with me to meet the farmers.

                                   DEAN STEVENS 617-869-3014