Bean: Cartuai, Caturra, Washed and Honey washed, Finca Hartmann, Panama.
Shop: Boot, Baarn, The Netherlands.
Boot – Panama Birdsong: Background information.
The Panama Birdsong comes from the famous Finca Hartmann Estate in Panama. This Estate is located in the North-Western region, up against the slopes of the Volcan Baru mountain in the Talamanca mountain range. This mountain range starts in Santa Clara, continues well into Costa Rica and hosts a lush tropical rainforest that provides the shade for the coffee plants on the Estate of Finca Hartmann. It is also notable that Boot has been importing coffee from this farm for over 19 years and knows the Hartmann family very well. This results in a close collaboration and continuity of the production of high quality coffee. Panama Birdsong is named after the many (over 280 species of birds have been spotted on Finca Hartmann) birds that live and visit the farm. Panama Birdsong is a blend of Catuai and Caturra beans that have undergone a fully washed process and a honey washed process.
Boot – Panama Birdsong: Opening the package.
When I got the Panama Birdsong I immediately noticed the beautiful package of Boot. The golden colour really catches the eyes, the sticker provides lots of information about the coffee and, obviously, the package comes with a degassing valve and zip-lock. When opening the package I can clearly make out the character of the coffee; this is not your average soft tasting coffee that you will drink all day long. The aroma is fierce and reminds me of nuts and spices. While grinding I smell the aroma’s slowly taking over my nostrils. I think it is high time to brew this coffee into liquid gold!
Boot – Panama Birdsong: The Tasting.
Because of the pleasant scent coming off from the ground coffee, I decided to slowly make my way up in dosage while brewing the coffee. I eventually ended up at 20.5 grams of coffee for the best aromas and flavours. The coffee has an amazing appearance when it flows out of the portafilter. The colours are a darker beige colour and the aroma coming off from the syrupy brew is that of nuts and a hint of black currant. The black currant is not overly apparent such as in a Ethiopian coffee but still is noticeable. When the espresso is done brewing I bring the cup up to my nose and inhale softly and faster in turn. The black currant is noticed when inhaling faster through your nose.
I take a sip and slurp the oxygen inside my mouth at the same time; creamy thickness of the crema and the silky mouthfeel are great. The first thing I notice is the flavour of raw peanuts, the ones that are still shelled and need to be peeled. As the coffee flows further to the back of my mouth, the nutty flavour is backed up with a fruitiness of dark berries like black currant. I start to swallow the coffee and I feel the tip of my tongue tingle a little because of the acidity. A black pepper-like sensation stimulates my mouth in the back by making it warm. After swallowing the Panama Birdsong another sensation appears in my mouth: a tiny astringency like that of raw cocoa powder: very pleasant! This blend of Catuai and Caturra is great.
The Panama Birdsong also works fine as a milk-based drink such as cappuccino. The nutty flavour is going very well with the milk and the fruitiness gives that little sweetness to the coffee so you will not need to use any sugar at all.
Boot – Panama Birdsong: The verdict.
Boot is a famous roaster in The Netherlands and even in the surrounding countries. When reviewing their coffee I totally get where they got their fame. This blend of Catuai and Caturra is a great balanced blend that is great in every aspect. The nutty flavour, the black currant fruitiness and the pepper-like sensation make this a great coffee for an espresso and a milk-based drink as well. I do not think that this is a coffee that you should drink throughout the day. Rather take your time and enjoy this coffee in peace. If you are looking for a coffee that has a creamy and thick mouthfeel and nutty flavours that are backed up by fruitiness, this is your coffee.
Boot has a website where you can find all sorts of coffees to your liking. Watch out for my next review: Boot – El Salvador, Honey Washed Limited edition.