We made a new friend this season, Keith Pech. Turns out he has some family in the U.P. (Michigan) and passes by our warehouse from time to time visiting his family. Keith is really on the cutting edge of Panamanian coffee, he won the Best of Panama this year for one of his Pacamara micro-lots. A little pricey for our list (went for $61/lb in Panama) but he really hooked it up with two nice high-end Natural Processed Caturra for far less money than the competition winner and very tasty. His mom is actually part of the Ruiz family who we have sourced a ton of awesome Panama coffees from in years past.
Turns out Keith is buddies with all the other Panama operations we have dealt with in the past as well. Comes highly recommended and will give us access to a bunch of smaller newer farms we did not have reach to before including a sister lot Keith brought us from Finca Stacy. We look forward to expanding our footprint in Panama with the help of the Keith.
This is the neighboring farm to Keith, he does the processing for it and helps play consultant on the growing side of things. Turned out very lovely. Pretty similar to the Damarli estate but a little smoother and not as sharp.
Tasting Notes: A very jazzy cup of coffee with a pretty strong natural processed spin. Lighter roasting points (before 2nd crack) are where this cup will shine. Light roasts themselves will be fairly bright with pretty strong citrus floral and fruit tones. The fruitiness is almost winy and more reminiscent of a red grape-skin; complex with a little astringency upfront. The cup will be pretty front loaded at the light roast points but a little chocolaty factor can be found when the cup cools. Medium roasts bring much more balance to the cup but can burn out the cooler fruitiness to the cup pretty quick. Too close to 2nd crack and the acidity is almost removed from the cup, still leaves a very nice sweeter chocolaty cup profile that many will like but almost a shame to lose those exotic winy and floral tones. Darker roasts taste good but mostly full of roasty and semi-sweet chocolate tones.
Roasting Notes: A bit dependent on personal taste what to do with this coffee but in general easy to roast. A bit higher chaff than a washed coffee but not over the top. If you like acidity, floral and fruit tones, the front loaded light roast cup is pretty cool stuff. If you like traditional Panama and Central American coffee, good to go into the medium roast points to get some darker toned balance. Darker roasts are not recommended but tasty for you darker roast Panama lovers. One can get close to the dark roast profile of this cup with cheaper coffee.
Damarli Estate is a specialty coffee farm located in Boquete, Panama. The estate dates back to 1995 when David Pech, a photographer in the United States and his wife Lia Pech (Ruiz) bought the farm from a bank foreclosure. Lia’s family, the Ruiz family, had been heavily involved in the coffee industry in Boquete for four generations; thus David and Lia were encouraged to get involved with the family industry as well.
Damarli, as a name came from a combination of the original investors: David and Lia and David’s father and mother (Manfred and Ruth Pech) – DA- for David, MA- for Manfred, R – for Ruth and LI – for Lia.
The estate was planted in 1996 and began to produce in 2001. For over one decade Damarli Estate sold the raw coffee cherries to Casa Ruiz, which was Lia’s family’s coffee business. In 2014, David and Lia’s son Keith moved from the United States to Panama in order to begin a new project at Damarli Estate. This was the beginning of a new chapter for the beans.
Keith began to identify all the unique coffee varieties that were grown at Damarli Estate and market them internationally. Keith and David began to process their own coffee at the estate in a way that would create sweet and unique cup profiles that had little to no water waste. They built a house on the estate to accept visitors, a new mill and drying beds to process all the coffees and a coffee tasting lab to accept international buyers. Damarli Estate is a beautiful farm filled with tropical birds, tall canopy forests and enchanting sunrises.