With seeing this, I’m beginning to wonder if the Esmeralda hype is finally calming down. My first experience with this coffee happened in 2006. Since then, the farm has become notorious for it’s high priced, rare geisha varietal. Books have been written, and many tale a told about the coffee.
In recent days, Devin Pedde and I have debated what the real value is of this coffee. In the store this year, we’ve sold it as chemex and espresso. The most interest and success has come with the single origin espresso. The thoughts been thrown out about offering V60’s (melitta) this coming week, as it would lower our required dose and how much of the coffee someone may have to buy. The challenge for us, has been to simply find the best way to have our customers experience this coffee.
All in all, I can tell you that for me, the hype is over.
Here’s why I am no longer infatuated with this coffee. It’s good. Really, it can be incredible. However, I think that many of the other offerings that we’ve had this year have been on par with this coffee. To clarify, many of our coffees have been really good. Guatemala, Kenya, and El Salvador all stick out in my mind. We’ve had some great micr0-lots to spice up the mix as well. These coffees come from relationships we’ve built over time. They come from faster transport handled by Intelligentsia’s imports. These coffees taste great, but they come to our customers at a much easier price-point. We don’t have to play any kind of novelty card because they are what coffees should be… delicious.
I’ve head geeks and snobs gripe about how the Esmeralda is not as good as it was in 2007 or 2008… Sorry buddy, I don’t care about what kinda sentimental-palate shattering moment you had when you first tasted this coffee back then. This is the now, and the coffee is great! But that’s the best part… it no longer stands alone.