The Queen of Specialty Coffees - Geisha Coffee
Geisha coffee is on everyone's lips. Due to its outstanding, very complex flavors, exceptional quality, but especially its rarity, Geisha Coffee is incredibly sought after. We have a remarkable selection of high quality Geisha coffees since the summer of 2020. Learn all about this special bean here.
What's to know about Geisha coffee? A little history
The Geisha variety originated in Ethiopia. It is a wild variety and belongs to the Heirloom family like Bourbon, Typica and some others. From there it was brought to Central America. Why they were brought to Costa Rica and Panama has several reasons: during that time a severe fungal infestation raged in coffee plantations and farmers lost not only crop yields but entire coffee fields. More by chance, it was discovered that the Geisha varieties were resistant to this disease. The unique terroir of the soil in Central America allows the coffee cherries to develop their particularly rich and complex character. Geisha coffees develop strong floral notes with sweetness and lemony acids, which is more typical of African coffees. Yet they are very light and have a tea-like body. Because individual coffee trees produce only a few cherries, their flavors are so intense. Thus, the full energy of the plant can be distributed among just a few cherries. Since 2004, Hacienda La Esmeralda gained enormous fame when it entered a competition with a Geisha lot, and subsequently won it several times in a row. Geisha coffee was able to be brought to market by farmers for an enormously higher price than commodity coffee as early as 2007, and the price continues to rise sharply. This has encouraged many coffee farmers in Costa Rica and Panama to grow this noble Geisha variety.
Panama was not known for Specialty Coffee for a long time. But that has changed with the cultivation and steady cultivation of Geisha varieties: Francisico Seracín Sr. (Don Pachi) brought the first geisha seeds to Panama about 30 years ago. He began growing them on his coffee farm in the Boquete region at about 1400 MNN. What is remarkable about this coffee story is that this variety was not known in Panama until then. Don Pachi has since done incredible pioneering work for this variety. Political instability and difficult access to international purchase markets made it almost impossible for the Panamanian coffee sector to spread to the world market. Because of the difficult growing conditions, and due to low crop yields, the spread of the Geisha variety was particularly difficult. However, his passion for coffee, along with a fair amount of bite and tenacity, enabled him to establish the Geisha variety throughout Panama. From here, it also made its way to the Hacienda La Esmeralda, known for its exceptional Geisha lots. Don Pachi is now considered the "Godfather of Geisha" in Panama. He passed away in 2016 at the age of 78.
The Geisha Boom
About 5-6 years ago, after Hacienda La Esmeralda of Panama had so successfully auctioned off its geisha lots. There was a real geisha boom: the prices for geisha coffees rose higher than anything ever before and many coffee farmers followed the trend, also because they could get much higher prices for their coffees this way. And a high income, means better qualities for all the coffees of a farm, because the production conditions can be improved significantly. Today, many coffee countries Geisha coffees, but the name comes with the expectation to taste an outstanding coffee. Unfortunately, many coffees do not live up to the expectation. Nevertheless, they are very, very good. And we are pleased to offer a wide range of truly remarkable-delicate coffees!