Top Five

CCS Top Five: Veronika

It's no secret I'm big lover of Panamanian coffees. It is the first origin I visited and my favorite coffee origin to compete with at brewing competitions, because of my personal connection to this country. So my Top Five consists mostly of Panama, but there are some surprises from Latin America too. Click on a title to order a sample.


1. Finca Elida Green Tip Geisha Natural

One of the farms I have visited in February 2017 was Finca Elida, owned by the Lamastus family. They are well known for such a great Geisha lots, winning Best of Panama year after year and baristas repeatedly competing with their coffees. No wonder - this is the one you should go for your competition. Intense floral aroma with flavors of strawberries, hint of mint and creamy body. Sounds like a delicious dessert!    

2. Finca Elida Catuai Natural

When we did a blind cupping at the farm I found my favorite ever coffee: Catuai, naturally processed. It has intense candy sweetness with a fruit explosion, which it consistently delivers each year, crop after crop. Even the geishas were jealous.  

3. El Burro Geisha Natural

I tried to get to El Burro, driving two hours uphill on a rugged path that was one meter deep and the width of our car. Sadly it started to rain and the road became muddy and slippery. We had to turn back, but I see now in my cup how precious are those climate conditions up there. This coffee explodes with apricots, bergamot, exotic florals, strawberry.  It is juicy, sweet, and a well balanced cup.  

4. Brazil, Santuario Sul, Sudan Rume, Anaerobic 

Coffees on the drying beds at Santuario Sul. On the left, natural processed coffee. On the right, anaerobic.

Coffees on the drying beds at Santuario Sul. On the left, natural processed coffee. On the right, anaerobic.

Every morning I come to office and I brew my V60 and share with my colleague Suzie - the best start of the day, with a proper cup. I never thought I would be excited about brewing Brazilian coffee, but this year the team from Carmo Coffees brought lots which are total game changers. My favorite is the Sudan Rume processed by anaerobic fermentation - such a clean and fruity cup! Read more about these exciting coffees

5. Sidra 152 Lactic


Team of La Palma Y El Tucan are open about being coffee nerds. So am I and I believe most of us are, competitors especially. When looking for something funky, unexpected from Colombian coffees, they have wide selection of Heroes Series coffees including Sidra, Geisha, SL28 varieties. This year my favorite is a Sidra Lactic, fermented specifically to to play around with different acids found in the coffee. This sweet fruity coffee sparkles with blackberry, florals and banana. Buy it! Brew it! Win!

See Bjørnar’s Top Five.

CCS Top Five: Bjørnar

A client and I were chatting the other day and he asked “What are your top 5 coffees?”

I could spend all day answering this question.
My top 5 of all coffees we have had this year?
Of all the coffees I have cupped lately?
Of all coffees I have cupped, ever?

We started chatting in the office, and I realized the answer says so much about us and our role in the company, and I wanted to share these answers with our customers.

And so, the CCS Top 5 was born.

Each month we will ask a member of the team for their Top 5 coffees. For the purposes of this blog, we decided to focus on coffees that are currently available, that way, if you find our favorites interesting, you can get their hands on them.

I will kick things off this month, so here goes, my Top 5 list (In no particular order). Click on a coffee if you would like to order a sample. 

Ricardo Perez and his daughter Lucia of Santa Lucia / Helsar de Zarcero, Costa Rica

Ricardo Perez and his daughter Lucia of Santa Lucia / Helsar de Zarcero, Costa Rica

Costa Rica, Santa Lucia

Plum and strawberry, marmalade, blueberry, 88 points. 

The coffees from the Mill Helsar de Zarcero have always been dear to me. Santa Lucia (the farm) and Helsar (the mill) were actually the first I ever visited in my coffee career. That was back in 2010. We have purchased coffees from Helsar every year since 2009, first for Kaffa and now for CCS. 

When I selected this particular coffee back March, it was a solid and sweet coffee. But when we just recently cupped the pre-shipment sample, I was quite surprised with how the coffee has developed. It is so complex, with lots of deep fruit. I am really looking forward for this to arrive, and hoping it will find a good home. 


Karyu - coffee washer at the Hallo Fuafuate washing station

Karyu - coffee washer at the Hallo Fuafuate washing station

Ethiopia Hallo Fuafate

Floral, peach, lychee, bright and clear, 88 points.

This coffee has consistently been the best washed Ethiopian on all our cupping sessions. It comes from Snap, a new partner for us in Ethiopia. Both the coffee and the partnership are very promising.

Volcán de Agua, known as Hunapu in the Mayan language, Antigua, Guatemala

Volcán de Agua, known as Hunapu in the Mayan language, Antigua, Guatemala

Guatemala Antigua Hunapu

Hazelnut, Grape, Red Currant, Roasted Hazelnut, Roasted Bakers Chocolate, Caramel, 87 points. 

This is such a solid coffee. Hunapu is the name of a blend of coffees from smallholder producers around Volcán de Agua in Antigua, Guatemala. It’s a coffee that works really well as a filter, with notes of berries and complex acidity. And is also perfect as a darker roast, either as a stand alone deep espresso or as a fresh component in a blend. 



Kenya - Karimikui AA

Berry, strawberry, rose hips, blackberry, 88 points

This is one of these coffees that keeps on shining on the cupping table. In this lot the AA is by far the most intense and acidity-forward coffee of the three, with my absolute favorite note found in Kenyan coffee: rose hip.

Drying beds, Kiunyu Coffee Factory, Kirinyaga, Kenya

Drying beds, Kiunyu Coffee Factory, Kirinyaga, Kenya

Kenya - Kiunyu AB

Raspberry, Citric Acid, Tropical Fruit, Grapefruit, Rose, 88 points

We will have all grades from this lot (AA, AB and PB) and they are all performing spectacularly well. For me, the AB sorting from this lot is the most vibrant and complex of the three.