Once again we’d like to thank the folks at Panama Coffee Gold Reserve for sending us some bags of their coffee.
A few months ago we reviewed their excellent Auromar Panama Geisha coffee.
And now they have sent us a bag of their Esmeralda Geisha Special. Lucky us!
In case you didn’t read our earlier review, let me share a few words about Geisha coffee, where it comes from and why it’s so special.
Geisha is a rare coffee varietal that does well only under very particular conditions.
It was discovered in Ethiopia, the birthplace of coffee, where it was first found growing wild in the 1930s near the town of Gesha.
Over time plants were sent to other coffee-growing countries in Africa, and then to Costa Rica and Panama.
The Geisha varietal didn’t fare every well in Panama until someone found just the right climate and soil conditions in the Chiriqui Highlands on Panama’s tallest peak, Volcan Baru.
The rest, as they say, is history.
For years now Geisha coffees have been winning best coffee awards around the world. The supply is limited and the beans are highly prized by top roasters in North America and around the world.
As always we ground the beans just before brewing and made the coffee in our Bonavita drip brewer.
The aroma gives you a hint of what’s to come with a touch of flowers and fruit.
And when you taste it, you immediately know this is a very special coffee indeed.
It’s soft in your mouth, with a light and subtle blend of flavors. When I say soft, I don’t mean weak. A weak taste is thin and watery, often with sharp taste notes. This Esmeralda is soft but with an even and confident spread of flavors.
It has a sweetness that is carried by a smooth fruit flavor – a blend of berries and perhaps a touch of cherry. Maybe a little honey in there too.
And yes, you get the soft bite of acidity you want in a quality coffee.
Most interesting of all, we thought, were the floral notes...also with a touch of sweetness, like petals dusted with fine sugar.
This is a coffee without any harsh notes. It’s velvety. It has the strength you want, but wrapped in a fascinating harmony of floral and fruit flavors.
If you try some, please don’t add any milk or sugar. This is a coffee to be enjoyed black, and in a setting where you can give it your full attention.
NOTE: This product was sent to us free in return for a review. (That said, we always reserve the right NOT to review a free product if we don't like it, or feel you wouldn't like it.)
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About the author: Nick Usborne, aka Coffee Detective, is a writer and long-time coffee enthusiast. Read more…