I have heard amazing things about this little gem and it's unique aroma and flavor, but had to try it for myself. This is what coffee connoisseurs can't wait for each year. Needless to say I'm quite excited to get a hold of some of this years crop of Esmeralda Special Geisha from Social Coffee and Tea Company.
Yes, this is a review, but it is more than that. It's an experience in and of itself.
When I first opened the bag, the intense jasmine and citrus aromas were light and clean. I felt like I was immediately transported to an exotic island with perfect temperature and in a spa, like you would see on TV. Once ground, the jasmine aroma had a lemongrass hint to it.
When I first sipped it, there wasn't hardly any citrus. It was more earthy, lemongrass and a slight jasmine musk to it. It was very silky smooth over the tongue. I had to reassure myself that I just French pressed it because the acidity was so balanced. with a really nice floral lingering.
The more the coffee cooled, the more the floral flavor of jasmine and juiciness of citrus came out. It literately made my mouth water in between sips. I can't wait to try it as an espresso from my Aeropress. Hot or cold, this is truly an amazing coffee. Not just the flavor but the story of the farm as well.
About the Farm
Hacienda La Esmeralda is a farm in Boquete, Panama in the Jarmillio area. This farm, overall, produces some amazing coffee. But there is one area in particular that develops better coffee than the rest of the farm called Esmeralda Special. Every year, there is an online auction for this lot and bids so high making this the second most expensive coffee in the world. That price also means a family that is meticulous in growing , processing, and sustainability.
Climate: Cold inside a valley
Yield: 50-100 bags
* 1st Place Specialty Coffee Association of America Roasters Guild Cupping Pavilion (2007, 2006, 2005) * 2nd Place Coffee of The Year (2009, 2008) * 1st Place "Best of Panama" (2009, 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004) * 1st Place Rainforest Alliance Cupping for Quality (2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2004)
Pros: Highest quality, Rain Forest Certified, Sustainability, Not digested through an animal
Cons: $$$ Moderately priced-Expensive and Limited supply
Conclusion: If you like to indulge at a really nice restaurant with an expensive wine, you must try this coffee. Esmeralda Special is one coffee every enthusiast should try at least once. Add it to your ‘indulgent list', ‘special occasion list', ‘bucket list', now!
Don't forget to try this and other wonderful and highly graded coffees from Social Coffee and Tea Company. To find out more about this coffee and the farm, check out the Hacienda La Esmeralda website.
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