The Most Expensive Cup of Coffee in North America

The Most Expensive Cup of Coffee in North America

The Most Expensive Cup of Coffee in North America

  • World’s most expensive cup of coffee went on sale Saturday

Klatch Coffee is now brewing a cofffee called Esmerald Geisha Canas Verdes Natural, one $55-cup at a time at its Klatch Roastery & Tasting Lab in a Rancho Cucamonga industrial park.

“We wanted as many people as possible to experience this unique, amazing coffee,” said Mike Perry, who opened the 1st Klatch coffeehouse 24 years ago.

The coffee they’re brewing was grown on the slopes of a volcano in Panama by Hacienda La Esmeralda. The family-owned coffee estate has been winning awards for its Geisha beans, which can be traced back to Ethiopia, for more than a decade.

Esmeralda set a price record in Y 2013, when its beans sold to roasters at auction for $350 a pound.

This year, after the estate again won the Best of Panama competition with a record-high score, roasters from around the world drove the price up to $601 a pound, giving the coffee the nickname Esmeralda 601.

Only 100 lbs of the record-setting beans were available for purchase.

It got divvied up 11 lbs at a time between 9 buyers, including roasters in Australia, Dubai and China. Mr. Perry was the only roaster in the Western Hemisphere to get a vacuum-sealed batch.

Mr. Perry, who has a degree in chemical engineering, travels the world to find the best coffee.

Once he tastes a brew he likes, he visits the farm in person to see how the beans are processed and how the company does business, refusing to buy from farms that don’t treat their workers well or incorporate sustainable practices. Farms that meet his high standards become partners, working together on techniques to produce the best coffee possible.

When Perry gets the raw beans back to his Rancho Cucamonga facility, he and his crew experiment with different roasting and brewing techniques until they find the mix that they feel creates the best cup of coffee.

As soon as he got his 11 lbs of Esmeralda 601, Mr. Perry knew he wanted to let people inside and outside the industry get a taste.

He created the 601 Experience.

People around the world could order shipments of the coffee in 15-gram packages — just enough to brew 1 cup. The furthest order came from Saudi Arabia.

People could also purchase 1 of 3 packages for tasting events that opened Saturday, 18 November in the Rancho Cucamonga lab.

There, brewers slowly poured 240 milliliters of filtered water in a spiral motion over 15 grams of Esmeralda 601 using a Kalita 155 coffee dripper.

It cost $55 to try just the Esmeralda 601.

For $70, aficionados  could try the Esmeralda 601 plus the 2nd place winner in the Panama competition. And it cost $95 for both + another Esmeralda variety, all brewed individually by Klatch’s 2X US Brewing Champion, Todd Goldsworthy.

All of the tasting packages sold out Saturday, with industry experts and regular coffee lovers traveling hundreds of miles to sample the record-setting brew.

Have a terrific week.

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