Blue Mountain is one of the most expensive and sought after cafes in the world. It is cultivated at an elevation of 2,200 meters in the Blue Mountains, Jamaica.
This article explains everything you need to know about this grand cru.
What Is Blue Mountain Coffee?
Few coffee lovers know that Jamaica derives most of its income from bauxite, of which it is the seventh-largest producer, and that in fact, its famous Blue Mountain cru grows only in the far eastern tip of the country. the island, in a small area that does not extend beyond Kingston.
Production is owned by only three parishes: St. Andrew, where coffee was first planted in 1728 by Sir Nicholas Lawes, Portland, and St. Thomas, to the south.
The other coffee growing regions, which collectively would cover an area twice the size of Blue Mountain, actually produce 75% of Jamaican coffee.
These regions sell bags marked “High Mountain Supreme” and “Prime Washed Jamaica”, names very close to that of Blue Mountain, of which they do not have the quality.
In fact, Jamaica Blue Mountain (JBM) is not packaged in bags but in barrels, and all coffee exported is guaranteed by the Coffee Industry Board.
Either way, consumers of JBM are rarely immune to fraud, because when they buy 200g of roasted beans (which is the most we can afford), they don’t necessarily see the barrel in which the beans were transported.
In addition, there are many countries that cultivate Arabicas of the Blue Mountain variety, and most of them do not have the required altitudes.
The JBM market is set to change: Japan, which for almost thirty years was its main buyer, has been severely affected by the economic crisis in Asia, which could well alter the distribution of this most important coffee. Expensive of the world snatching up at exorbitant prices.
What Does Blue Mountain Taste?
Blue Mountain is only premium Caribbean coffee, and as such subject to the same environmental issues as other Caribbean coffees.
A good harvest results in a well-balanced cup, with a nutty flavor, strong but not overpowering acidity, a smooth flavor, and a “clean” but interesting cup.
The body might be a little weak, and anyone who likes strong coffee will need to increase the dose to get a cup to their liking.
As Jamaica’s Blue Mountain sells in much larger quantities than the region can produce, be very careful: only buy JBM that is 100% pure and from a safe source. You can find them online.