The rarest, most sought-after, expensive coffee bean called Geisha comes from Panama. Originally known as Esmeralda Boquete Geisha, the Panama Esmeralda Private Reserve Geisha grows on the slopes of the Barú Volcano near Boquete in Panama. It sells for a whopping $140 per pound at international coffee auctions.
It comes as no surprise that Boquete is known as the Bordeaux of coffee. The special soil in Boquete is enriched with volcanic ash combined with the cool mountain air, making it perfect for growing coffee.
The Geisha bean originates from the rain forests of Ethiopia. It did not make its way to the Americas until the 1950s. A farmer by the name of Don Pachi imported the specialty coffee to Panama in the 1960s. His family still owns a plantation in Boquete today.
When visiting the amazing coffee farms of Boquete, be sure to see the most incredible plantations including Finca La Valentina, the Don Pachi Estate, and the Hacienda La Esmeralda. Also on the list of coffee farm destinations to visit include Finca Lerida, Finca Dos Jefes, Kotowa Estates, and Café Ruiz.
Each of the coffee farms has its own unique tour and includes tasting and hands-on experience. Some of the tours are as long as several hours in length, and others are extremely strict about their coffee. The strictness can result in participants needing to come without any scent, be it perfume, lotion, or even sunblock, if it omits an odor that can affect the complexity of the delicate coffee beans.