This is Pepe Jijon's first year of Gesha production, and it is an honor to have the opportunity to work with it! The cup is fruit-forward, with flavors of fermented tropical fruits, delicate florals, and deep sweetness.
Hand-picked at 22° Brix. Held in-cherry in open air and de-pulped the following day. Fermented for 24 hours in sealed tanks. Washed. Dried in a controlled dark room for 40 days.
Pepe Jijon is an inspiring producer with an inspiring farm. Finca Soledad is a biodynamic organic farm with some of the most biodiversity we've ever seen. He produces only Sidra, Gesha, and Mejorado on a 4-hectare (~10 acres) parcel of land nestled within 120 hectares (~300 acres) of cloud forest. Soledad is also a community-oriented project where Pepe and his family support and employ single mothers abandoned by their husbands.
Gesha was originally collected from coffee forests of Ethiopia in the 1930's. From there, it was sent to the Lyamungo Research Station in Tanzania, and then brought to Centro Agronómico Tropical de Investigación y Enseñanza (CATIE) in Central America in the 1953, where it was logged as accession T2722. It was distributed throughout Panama via CATIE in the 1960’s after its tolerance to coffee leaf rust was recognized. However, it was not widely planted because the plant's branches were brittle and not favored by farmers. Gesha came to prominence in 2005, when the Peterson family of Boquete, Panama, entered it into the Best of Panama competition and auction. It received exceptionally high marks and broke the then-record for green coffee auction prices, selling for over $20 per pound. Since then, the variety has become a resounding favorite of brewing and roasting competition winners and coffee enthusiasts alike.
The cost of getting a coffee from cherry to beverage varies enormously depending on its place of origin and the location of its consumption. The inclusion of price transparency is a starting point to inform broader conversation around the true costs of production and the sustainability of specialty coffee as a whole.