Best of Panama Coffee Competition – Boquete, Panama April 12 – 14, 2007
We recently returned from Boquete, Panama where we served on a panel of international judges for The Best of Panama, a prestigious coffee competition. The annual event’s objective is to determine and rank the finest coffees from Panama grown this year. The top twenty coffees, all small lots, will then be auctioned to enthusiastic buyers worldwide in a live internet auction on May 29th.
The top farm this year is Hacienda La Esmeralda owned by the family of Price Peterson. This now famous coffee has taken first place in the competition for four consecutive years and has also taken top honors in other multi-national coffee competitions. In last year’s auction, La Esmeralda set two records in The Best of Panama: the highest score and the highest price – $50.50 per unroasted pound. Only about 1000 pounds of that particular lot were available.
In addition to any coffees we may purchase at auction, we are pleased to say that we will be acquiring some quantity of La Esmeralda Especial, a very limited and nearly identical coffee from the winning farm. The specialty coffees from Panama have rapidly risen to ‘World Class’ status in recent years. While La Esmeralda gets most of the attention, which it clearly deserves, all of the top finalists are producing coffee at the highest level of excellence. Some of these coffees are just terrific.
La Esmeralda as well as the second place coffee are unique because they are grown from an exotic varietal called Geisha. It originates from Ethiopia and has been successfully grown in Boquete’s high altitude and cool climate. But other varietals that took top positions also show off the natural attributes of the area and the local farmer’s commitment to quality and environment. Many farmers there are adding the Geisha varietal to select sections of their land.
We have already secured some superb coffee and will acquire more. Expected arrival will be in June and we will advise you.
B and B