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Topic: Jamaica coffee (16 msgs / 329 lines)
1) From: gin
received this note from my sister this am:
"Saw a show last night on Travel Channel, "Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations" from Jamaica. He visited a Blue Mountain coffee estate over 200 years old. It got into exports to Japan in the 50's, and now 85% of Blue Mountain coffee goes to Japan where it sells for $17 a cup.
 
Only 7% of that type coffee comes to the U.S., 8% goes everywhere else, and they don't routinely drink coffee in Jamaica, only export it.
 
Thought it was interesting. "
ginny
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2) From: Floyd Lozano
And that's why the quality is hit and miss and it's so expensive.  If
someone is willing to pay $17 a cup already, why bother to get better?
 To get $18 a cup?  The mark up here is astonishing.  I am jealous!
I'd pay that much for a lb green, but that's about my upper limit and
it best be something special!
-F
On Wed, Feb 20, 2008 at 7:25 AM, gin  wrote:
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3) From: Samiel Wong
Maybe it's $17 a cup but the massage is free.
On 2/20/08, Floyd Lozano  wrote:
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4) From: Sandra Andina
I have a friend in Miami whose wife is Jamaican--her family  
(essentially Jamaica's version of the Jewish "Grandees" who have been  
prominent in government there) has owned farms there for over two  
centuries.  Her son is head of agricultural operations for Chris  
Blackwell (Island Records), who has branched out from music into  
farming. There is prime coffee-growing land suitable for a plantation  
on the hilltop above one of the farms, and Blackwell's been trying for  
several years now to buy it in order to make high-grown Jamaican  
coffee available to more of the world. But still, when I brought my  
friends homeroast last time I was in Miami, it was an epiphany for  
them--coffee was considered an export and she didn't experience the  
good stuff till she moved Stateside.
Sandy Andina
www.myspace.com/sandyandina
On Feb 20, 2008, at 6:25 AM, gin wrote:
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5) From: Paul Helbert
I've been to Guatemala three times in the past five years for a month each
time. (Trying to beat Spanish into my bone head).
The locals grow great coffee but drink instant Nescafe. Fernando's Kaffee in
Antigua is the exception. Fernando roasts daily right in the front of his
shop and has made arrangements to receive a steady supply from small farmers
in the region. This has allowed him to liberate the several rooms in his
establishment which used to hold a year's worth of green beans. There is a
fellow in San Pedro La Laguna (up the hill on the left above the Panajachel
dock) who is somehow in cahoots with Fernando, has one of his roasters and
also sells a good cup.
Thought of this when I read this morning's post about the similar situation
in Jamaica.
I also tried to send this as a separate thread but left [Homeroast] off the
subject, so this may be a dup depending on how you have your filters set.
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6) From: Joseph Robertson
Sandy,
Nice post on this subject, all here are good posts on this. I just returned
from a course at Coffee Lab International. I learned a ton about origins,
brokers, buyers, the big end of our picture. I wish the best for the family
you mention here that wants to grow high grown coffees.
It's very hard to resist the big Japanese dollar. Or Yen as it is. The
Japanese are buying up coffee from many farms all over the world. They love
great coffee like us. The third wave of Specialty is going over big in
Japan. The same thing happen here on the left coast where I live regard the
Pacific salmon. It is affecting coffee prices on a global scale.
Floyd, you make a good point, why change farming practices if half your crop
is bringing in what it is from the Japanese market. The Blue Mountain
growers really don't want to change much at this rate of perceived customer
satisfaction. Perceived is the key here.
At the coffee lab school I roasted and cupped specialty coffee from several
different farms from several different regions around the world. Blue
Mountain is very good, but 17.00 a cup.
No. A taste yes. Buy? No.
Blue Mountain has a wonderful marketing campaign driven by a pumped up
market price. The biggest thing I took home from coffee school is that the
current speciality coffee market is complex driven my many factors. The
future of specialty coffee takes a lot of experience to forecast. Sandy your
last comment about "having to come stateside to experience the best"
hit the nail on the head. The small home and micro roasters are pushing the
envelope of growth in R&D of Specialty coffee. A very select few like Tom
and Mane' A. who owns coffee lab international are working with farmers to
develop better producing plants and farms.  The future for us on this end is
bright. The overall market show no signs of slacking off. I love drinking
the best and following the growth and development of the third wave of
coffee.
Speak of that I haven't had my first cup of the day yet.
Cheers,
JoeR
On Wed, Feb 20, 2008 at 8:47 AM, Sandra Andina  wrote:
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7) From: Joseph Robertson
Sandra,
Sorry I called you Sandy. Me bad.
JoeR
On Wed, Feb 20, 2008 at 9:22 AM, Joseph Robertson 
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8) From: Tom & Maria - Sweet Maria's Coffee
I have cupped 4 offers on Jamaica Blue Mountain and they were average 
or less. When I ask myself what the flavors are, I can't think of 
anything. It's neutral coffee, at least everything I have seen this 
year. I tried to secure some peaberry hoping for something more in 
the cup and there was nothing there. I know there are a few coffees 
with a tiny bit of character but the farms are so influenced by 
maritime weather that it shifts a lot each year, well, as much as a 
mild coffee can shift. There are so many mill-oriented lots because 
of the way the coffee board has a stranglehold on the farmer, 
exporter, etc.
Anyway, there probably is a needle in that haystack but you have to 
ask yourself this: after all the effort to find it, all you have in 
hand is a needle! That makes the analogy look odd but it is actually 
quite fitting. I'll bust by butt looking for a true gem, but a 
needle? I can get those for nothing just down the street.
Tom
--
                   "Great coffee comes from tiny roasters"
            Sweet Maria's Home Coffee Roasting  -  Tom & Maria
                      http://www.sweetmarias.com                Thompson Owen george_at_sweetmarias.com
     Sweet Maria's Coffee - 1115 21st Street, Oakland, CA 94607 - USA
             phone/fax: 888 876 5917 - tom_at_sweetmarias.com
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9) From: Sandra Andina
No problem, I actually prefer "Sandy."  Mac Mail for OS X insists on  
using my .mac registration name.
Sandy Andina
www.myspace.com/sandyandina
On Feb 20, 2008, at 11:25 AM, Joseph Robertson wrote:
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10) From: Joseph Robertson
Tom,
Thanks for making something that seems like a mystery so clear. It's only
those on your level who have a chance to cup and inspect these "incon's" of
coffee who really have a clear picture. Mane' from Coffee Lab Intl. in
Vermont had virtually the same thing to say about this coffee only you went
into more detail.
Thanks Tom,
JoeR
On Wed, Feb 20, 2008 at 9:32 AM, Tom & Maria - Sweet Maria's Coffee <
sweetmarias> wrote:
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11) From: Joseph Robertson
OT,,,,,
Oh good Sandy,
Thant's funny about Mac mail. Sandy does seem more natural to me. I must
know more Sandy's than I'm aware of?
JoeR
On Wed, Feb 20, 2008 at 9:41 AM, Sandra Andina  wrote:
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12) From: Coffee
You should be able to change that... (if you want)
Under the Mail menu choose Preferences. Then click on the accounts  
button along the top. Under the settings for your .Mac email account  
there is a field for Full Name. You can put anything in there you  
want. That's the name it will attach to your emails.
-Peter
On Feb 20, 2008, at 9:41 AM, Sandra Andina wrote:
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13) From: Sean Cary
I am an avid cigar smoker - and have always heard the Cuban mystique about
their cigars...so naturally I had to get some - there are a ton of ways to
score them if you really want them (Spain, Canada etc).
After smoking a plethora of Cuban cigars - the best cigar I have ever had
was a Partagas from Cuba.  It was amazing, I burnt my fingers right to the
end - but the best cigars, the most consistent ones that I smoke on a
regular basis are from Nicaragua (Padron)...or the Dominican Republic
(Fuente) - they just don't have the mystique/price or illegality associated
with them, but they blow most Cuban cigars away.
Same thing with the JMB in my opinion - the needle aint worth the haystack.
My .02
Sean
On Wed, Feb 20, 2008 at 12:32 PM, Tom & Maria - Sweet Maria's Coffee <
sweetmarias> wrote:
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-- 
Sean M. Cary
Major USMC
Tempus Fugit, Memento Mori
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14) From: Bob Hazen
Sean,
Have you heard of the Cigar Factory in New Orleans?  I'm not qualified to 
critique the place, but it sure smelled great!  And it was fascinating to 
watch them roll cigars.  FWIW, a friend of mine was pretty pleased with 
their cigars.
Bob

15) From: Dave Kvindlog
On Wed, Feb 20, 2008 at 11:32 AM, Tom & Maria - Sweet Maria's Coffee <
sweetmarias> wrote:
<Snip>
I had 2# of JBM gifted to me last fall.  An expensive gift.  But like Tom
says, it was an average cup, balanced to a fault -- no distinct flavor came
out.  When I drink Tom's picks, a multitude of flavors explode from every
cup.  The JBM was exceptionally smooth, rather average in taste, and ended
with a unique lingering tobacco finish.  I'm not a smoker, so the taste
wasn't necessarily pleasant.  Interesting, yes.  Glad I didn't pay for it
tho.
Dave Kvindlog
iHomeroast
Cedar Rapids, Iowa
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16) From: Sean Cary
No - my memories of New Orleans are somewhat...faded?  I do remember feeling
really bad for the cleaning staff at Le Pavion after we left our room...and
that I had alcohol poisoning.  Closed Bourbon Street that morning...cannot
even smell a Hurricane w/o getting sick...but that is another story.
But I have been to a bunch of places on Calle Ocho in Miami and had cigars
rolled for me...my cigar consumption has declined markedly since I moved
away from Florida and my 8 year old rolls her eyes and comments when I light
up!  I have two coolers (68 and 100 qt) FILLED with cigars.
Sean
On Thu, Feb 21, 2008 at 12:02 AM, Bob Hazen  wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Sean M. Cary
Major USMC
Tempus Fugit, Memento Mori
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