Hacienda La Esmeralda: Finally got some!

Discuss flavors, brew temperatures, blending, and cupping notes.
User avatar
Posts: 107
Joined: Jul 23, 2007, 10:08 am

Postby WilsonHines » Nov 19, 2007, 11:05 am

Not a knock off lot. It was the Hacienda La Esmeralda Especial that brought the $130 (or whatever it was).

It smelled like Frootloops and didn't really taste much different. Thank goodness that was my favorite cereal as a kid!

Was it good? Yes. Was it incredible? No. Was it worth $130 per pound at auction and $250 per pound at the store? No. I would pay $20...tops. Ethiopia Biloya is much better for a fraction of the cost.

Posts: 69
Joined: Aug 26, 2007, 4:43 pm

Postby Randii » Nov 19, 2007, 11:29 am

I just had some too, at a tasting at Intelligentsia in Silverlake, on a Clover. I think it's funny that I had the *exact* same reaction as you did! I thought the Ethiopia Biloya is *way* better than the Esmeralda. In comparison, I really didn't see what all the buzz is about. I bought a 1/4 lb of Esmeralda to experiment with as an espresso, but I wouldn't go out of my way to buy it again.


Posts: 82
Joined: Jul 24, 2007, 10:57 pm

Postby perstare » Nov 22, 2007, 8:33 pm

I tried the "lesser" Esmeralda Geisha (non-auction)and was disappointed with all the hype. Perhaps my palate is not developed or my drip is not optimal, but time and again I find myself coming back to Novo Coffee's Yirgacheffe Aricha 7, using the same equipment. I'm now thinking of buying an Eva Solo--perhaps that will add a dimension that seems to be lacking. I'm awaiting receipt of Novo's Arena 1 and appreciate the hard work and enthusiasm Novo Coffee puts into their coffees. Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!

User avatar
Posts: 2631
Joined: May 05, 2005, 11:36 am

Postby malachi » Nov 27, 2007, 12:52 am

To each their own.
I know people who think the Lake Tawar was the best coffee of the year.
"Taste is the only morality." -- John Ruskin

User avatar
Posts: 107
Joined: Jul 23, 2007, 10:08 am

Postby WilsonHines » Nov 27, 2007, 9:43 am

Lake Tawar, eh? I can't comment as I haven't had any, maybe it is time! :)

Thanks for the tip!

Captain Obvious
Posts: 1
Joined: Jan 23, 2008, 10:53 pm

Postby Captain Obvious » Jan 23, 2008, 11:11 pm

I roasted up my 1/2lb of the auction lot last Friday. I reduced wattage from 1150W to 1000W once I got to 1st crack so I could extend the time a bit without roasting it too dark (GeneCafe is 1300W without VariAC on my 20A circuit). Ultimately, I ended up with what I would call a city roast. Had I cut the roast 15 seconds earlier, there probably would have been some green taste left to it.

Saturday I brewed two pots (I busted the vac pot preparing to brew this coffee, so I had to use the Technivorm). In both instances, the results were very good, but that's about it. Somewhat bitter too.

I brewed a pot on Sunday morning and it was exceptional. It was very fruity, but in a soft, citrusy way. This was in complete contrast to the fruitiness of Ethiopia Aricha Selection 7. It almost smelled like a bowl of canned fruit cocktail. This was also a very sweet tasting coffee... sweeter than anything I've had before. The only bad thing was that it was still a bit bitter.

For my second pot Sunday, I stepped the grinder up 1 size to eliminate the bitterness. Sadly, the over the top fruitiness was largely absent. It is possible that my nose just adjusted to some extent though.

Monday, I brewed the last pot back on the smaller grind, and it was bitter again. The fruitiness was there, but it was eclipsed by the bitterness.

I've never had a coffee turn out bitter in the Technivorm before, but this was a roasted lighter than I usually roast, and the acid profile was completely unique.

I think the coffee has incredible potential, but I found it difficult to work with. Perhaps another 30 seconds in the roaster would have made a big difference. I might buy some of the non-auction just to satisfy my curiosity.

Posts: 2
Joined: Apr 02, 2008, 1:14 pm

Postby monito » Apr 09, 2008, 7:57 am

This is a very difficult coffee to roast. The bitter aftertaste is normally due to the lack of dryness of the beans at the beginning of the roast more that the city roast at the end of roast.

I brew mine on a Newco which is similar to your Technivorm, but it comes out perfect. I tried it as espresso and it did not workout for me.


User avatar
Posts: 440
Joined: Dec 31, 2006, 6:01 pm

Postby JimWright » Mar 01, 2009, 12:54 pm

I know I'm reviving a dead thread here, but wondering if any of the other folks who tried this experimented with it as an SO espresso.

I quite enjoyed the cup I had from the COE lot last year (drip brewed), and I picked up a pound of non-COE Esmeralda Geisha at LaMill yesterday and am thinking about seeing if I can get espresso out of it. Crazy?

User avatar
Team HB
Posts: 10264
Joined: May 05, 2005, 1:16 am

Postby another_jim » Mar 01, 2009, 4:02 pm

You won't know until you try.

I did my annual coffee seminar for UC students yesterday. On the menu were a series of coffees sourced from SM: a non-auction Geisha, the Panama Lerida peaberry, the Bonko Sidamo, the Mount Alla Sulawesi, and the Kenya Ndaroini (I haven't checked Tom's espresso recommendation on this). They were roasted more or less as you would expect for each origin for general brewing. Along side all these was an Eight O'Clock 100% Colombian, recent winner of the consumer digest taste test (and, with the curious homeroasting twist of being, at $8.50 per pound, the second most expensive coffee on the table).

Anyone care to guess about the winners?

User avatar
Posts: 1058
Joined: May 05, 2005, 11:29 pm

Postby AndyS » Mar 01, 2009, 7:12 pm

another_jim wrote:Anyone care to guess about the winners?

Jim, you'd get better participation in these contests if you got sponsorship and offered generous prizes. :-)

Anyway, I'd guess the Sidamo was the overall winner.
VST refractometer/filter basket beta tester, no financial interest in the company

Sponsored by cerinicoffee.com
www.cerinicoffee.com: official US importer for Olympia Express