DABOV participated in SIHRE – International exhibition for hotel, restaurant, catering and SPA equipment

Is Bulgaria a strong coffee consuming country? Which are the world’s biggest coffee producers? How many roasteries are there in Bulgaria? You can learn the answers to these questions and other interesting facts from DABOV’s CEO Vesela Vasileva CEO who speaks about the growing coffee culture in Bulgaria and DABOV’s founder Jordan Dabov who explains how to appreciate the different tastes in your cup of coffee.

Very soon, you will be able to taste COE Brazil 2018 winner – Brazil Paraiso, which is now on presale

As you already know, in October 2018, Andrade Bros.’ Lot #1 from their farm Fazenda Paraiso in Carmo do Paranaíba, MG, won the first place in the Pulped Natural category of Cup of Excellence Brazil with 93.26 points and DABOV Specialty Coffee managed to buy it on the auction in December 2018.

In February, you will be able to taste this remarkable coffee, Brazil Fazenda Paraiso COE #1 2018, which is now on presale. We will roast it on 11th Feb. and send it to you on 13th Feb.

Brazil Fazenda Paraiso COE #1 2018 – coffee from Paradise

For the second year in a row and for a third time, Jordan Dabov was part of the international jury and as he was cupping coffees from both categories in the world’s most disputed specialty coffee competition, our coffee hunter was amazed by Fazenda Paraiso’s coffee and noted that in his diary.

“Sweet and intense coffee, unbelievably rich symphony of flavors – raspberries, rose, sugar candy and more!”

Family history that dates to early 20th century

Brazil Fazenda Paraiso COE #1 2018 was cultivated in a special place – one of the oldest coffee farms in Brazil. The history of its owners, the Andrade family, began in 1901, at Capim Branco Farm, in Carmo do Paranaíba, High Cerrado, state of Minas Gerais. It is more than 115 years on the fields growing a coffee lineage, keeping family traditions, and adding two more farms! Capim Branco is famous for its specialty coffees. There Fazenda Paraíso is located and it was there where the Cup of Excellence winning lot was cultivated by farmer Ismael José de Andrade.

The terroir is perfect and the landscapes are breathtaking. The farm of Capim Branco spreads along 300 hectares and has 1.5 million coffee trees of the Yellow Catuaí variety. The altitude is 1,150 meters. The harvest time starts in the end of May and continues to August. There are 25 workers during harvest.

Where Brazil’s best natural coffee beans are produced

With the aim to produce high-quality coffees, the new generation of Andrade family, led by CEO Ismael José de Andrade, established their farms in the region Capim Branco during the ’70s. The altitude there is between 1.100 and 1.200 meters, which provides ideal conditions for growing coffee due to its perfect balance of wet and dry seasons.

Combined with the natural conditions of the region, the correct management of crops, crop planning and post-harvest with selection criteria of cherries, grains and natural drying, the results are excellent quality, award-winning beans, appreciated worldwide.

The volcanic soils are perfect for growing Catuaí, which thrives here and accounts for the majority of the farm’s yield.

Do you know that...

In 1991, through the initiative of twelve producers, who envisioned the opportunities that investing in the quality of the coffee would bring, the Andrade Brothers founded the BSCA (Brazil Specialty Coffee Association) that supports all small coffee producers in the region. It also helps producers improve quality, which improves sustainability. Helping producers to reach out for the importers worldwide, with eco-friendly coffee is another activity that BSCA performs. Andrade Brothers also founded an exporting company and thus they have a direct relationship with their customers, sending their coffee from origin on a Direct Trade basis.

Thanks to DABOV Specialty Coffee Number One Brazilian specialty coffee comes to the Bulgarian market for the first time  

The highest ranked specialty coffees from the Pulped Natural category of Cup of Excellence Brazil 2018 garnered on 5 Dec. more than $ 303 084 in an online auction but what is more important – we have succeeded in winning Fazenda Paraíso’s lot 1. In October, farmer Ismael José de Andrade’s farm from Carmo do Paranaíba, MG, won the first place in the Pulped Natural category of Cup of Excellence Brazil.

As you already know, for the second year in a row and for a third time, Jordan Dabov was part of the international jury.

While he was cupping coffees from both categories in the world’s most disputed specialty coffee competition in the country which is the biggest world coffee producer, our coffee hunter was amazed by Fazenda Paraíso’s coffee and noted that in his diary. The coffee garnered 94 points in a highly competitive company – each of the first eight coffees with the highest rank garnered more than 90 points.

This was a strong motivating factor for Jordan to enter the auction. Well aware of the serious bidding game of the main players from countries like Germany, Japan, South Corea, our coffee hunter chose the winning strategy – DABOV Specialty Coffee joined efforts with Maruyama Coffee, Sarutahiko Coffee and GoodBoyBob Coffee for a team bid.

We are extremely happy that we will be able to offer to you the extraordinary result of the third generation farmer Ismael José de Andrade and his workers! Soon we will present to you this special farm, Fazenda Paraíso, which is among the founders of BSCA – Brazil Specialty Coffee Association from 1991 onwards.

Jordan Dabov reminiscents about the long road he had to walk in the first 10 years of his labor of love, DABOV Specialty Coffee.

Jordan Dabov is someone who always has a broad smile on his face and radiates friendly energy. Why, then, he is so surprisingly serious and uncompromising when it comes to the coffee he offers to his clients? It is because he believes that handling the most special coffees in the world requires focus, dedication, and clear thought. He is proud that DABOV Specialty Coffee is a coffee company in all senses of the word – they not only begin and end their day with the idea of acquiring better coffee but also plan ahead, harvest after harvest. 10 years after they offered their first specialty coffee on the Bulgarian market, he and his team continue with the philosophy that the only compromise they can afford is not to compromise with any detail on the overall appearance (flavor, flavor, flavor) and image of their products. What was your idea for a business when you entered the Bulgarian market 10 years ago? Why have you chosen to sell Specialty Coffees when coffees with affordable prices could have brought you quicker and continuous profit? Jordan Dabov: We do not sell coffee because we are interested in faster or bigger sells and profits. I like a cup of good coffee as much as I would like to have one at hand whenever I feel like drinking one. Over the years, I have realized that many of my customers crave the same. I believe that my clients shouldn’t spend much time thinking about their coffee, and I keep on telling them this. However, someone must think about their coffee. And me, I think about coffee all the time! So, let me do that on behalf of my clients! Over the years we have realized that this involves great responsibility – when we entered deep into the world of coffee farms, coffee buyers, and even the company that is built the way we believe it should be build and we roast coffees the way we want them to be roasted. Responsibilities grow though, and when we approach them with responsibility, they will bring profits. For us, profits mean more coffee! We turn every profit into one more acquired coffee. The bigger the profits, the more opportunities to invest in the farmers we would like to be partners with – partners for life. Some coffees which unfortunately are rare, have very specific flavor. Today I call this ‘coffee flavor’ but it is totally different from what the industry calls ‘coffee flavor’, and after the industry, the coffee drinkers as well. Let me explain what I mean. Let’s just say that you like ordering espresso in a certain café where they have an espresso machine. When they serve it to you, you stir it, sometimes you add a little sugar. Although you expect a slightly bitter taste that will assure you that your espresso is of good quality and strong, sometimes you are caught by surprise by a stronger flavor. In the flavor I have in mind, there is a balance between sweetness and acidity, and there is no acute bitterness. Brewing emulsion. It runs down heavily on your palate and seals itself under your temple – forever. Have you adopted some specific rules for a successful business in these 10 years? Jordan Dabov: No 🙂 First and foremost, respect your supplier!!!!! Our suppliers are not the coffee buyers, coffee brokers or someone else in the chain. Our suppliers are the farmers who grow some of the world’s best coffees. These people are very important to us because we buy our coffee from them – they sell it to us (but in this process, a lot of emotions and other specific things are involved). Textbooks usually teach us to follow the opposite road – but this is wrong and simply doesn’t work. Our suppliers sell us with the coffee that we need. If we do not respect them, if we don’t understand their problems, if we do not cooperate with them and motivate them, everything that we do will be short lived. I don’t say that it wouldn’t work – but to us with Vesela (my wife who is also the CEO of our company), as people, this type of approach is unthinkable. We try to work in a similar way with our espresso machines suppliers. What is the most important thing that you have learned from the Bulgarian market and Bulgarian consumer? Jordan Dabov: When we returned to Bulgaria in the distant 2008, and we started ‘preaching the word of coffee’, the market was completely unprepared for this. There wasn’t Specialty Coffee on it, nor understanding of the nature of it, nor modern technologies to prepare it, nor milieu where to enjoy it. There have been probably few people who were able to buy some specialty coffee and enjoy a cup or two at home in the mornings, or in the evenings, just like my wife and I were doing. In 2009, I became friends with the now ex-executive of a distributor of hi-tech espresso machines. He invited me to their showroom because he had a client for their expensive machine, but he had no coffee for it. I went there with some coffee from a micro lot in Ethiopia. We drank all of it – everyone about 10 cups of espresso. The man went crazy about the coffee. Next day I went to his office with a kilo of the same coffee. We drank it with his clients. They bought the machine and started buying coffee from us. At that time, we still were not roasting our coffees, neither we negotiated with the farmers to buy directly from them. We were distributors of an American company for specialty coffee and they roasted them in Prague. Our clients were paying 90 leva for a kilo of Ethiopian coffee and they were preparing it on an extremely good espresso machine. Things started moving. Bulgaria had to walk a long road in order to reach the current situation of the specialty coffee market in the country. In my opinion, the situation is between good and very good. Of course, we can always look from a different side and lament our low consumption per capita. Perhaps, it is because of it that our sales are lower as well, but let me say that Bulgarian consumers are demanding, intelligent, sensitive and thoughtful. At least, DABOV Specialty Coffee clients are to 100%! What is the most important thing that you have thought Bulgarian consumers? Jordan Dabov: Bulgarian consumers should reply to this question. DABOV Specialty Coffee sell its products outside Bulgaria as well. How did this happen? Jordan Dabov: Our decision to sell outside Bulgaria was born not because we wanted to gain more profit but because I am extremely selfish, and I also hate everyone who hates or let us be kinder – looks condescendingly or full of doubts towards everything or everyone who comes from Bulgaria. In 2013, I started traveling to different farms to ‘learn the ropes’, and I also became a judge on Cup of Excellence (COE). Everyone I met – other fellow jurors, farmers, coffee buyers, changed the tone of their voices after they learned where I was from. ‘Oh, Bulgaria!’, The UK or German jurors would say. ‘Do you really know anything about coffee? Is there a market for it in Bulgaria?’ And coffee buyers and farmers would say, ‘That’s really nice – until today, not one Bulgarian company has ever requested an information or samples for our specialty coffee.’ I was very sad as I shared those conversations or sometimes even just attempts for conversations with my wife. I doubted that I would be classified as a juror for another championship even though I could pass the test. In other words, I was angry! Today, I have 8 COE contests behind my back as a juror and in some of them, I was the only European! But the most important thing is that it is almost impossible to come across a top farmer from Central America or Brazil who hasn’t heard our name, DABOV. We have a lot of work to do still but we have laid the foundations. Now, our goal is to show to Europe as well that Bulgaria can have company or, hopefully, companies that are synonymous to high-quality coffee products – starting from the raw material and finishing with the end product. According to you, coffee is a highly synergistic drink. Having this idea in mind, let us talk about your team. What kind of people do you like surrounding yourself with? Jordan Dabov: The core of our company hasn’t changed and is very stimulating for us. Here are the people I talk about: Jordan (10 years in the company) – coffee! Vesela (10 years in the company) – without her, there is no coffee! There is no company either. Teddy (9 years in the company) – without her, our coffee can’t reach our clients. Anita (8 years in the company) – she’s Vesela’s right hand. She does so many things! Sometimes I even don’t know exactly what. Ivo (5 years in the company) – he is Jordan’s right hand. Someone has to explain to our clients how to make their coffee. Our packaging is also more stylish thanks to him. Svetoslav (4 years in the company) – in order to have tasty coffee, our machines should work perfectly. By 2019, our team will exceed 15 people. Everybody in our team is a key team member and everybody inspires us and motivates us. Those who were different, are no longer with us. What have you accomplished in 10 years? Jordan Dabov: We have warmed up! Our job, or rather, what we do, is circular and infinite. We hunt for coffee, we find out the one that we need (and what we need is ultimately better and better coffees), we start negotiating, organizing the transportation, buying an insurance, thinking of eventual consolidation, preparing the warehouse, printing the labels for the packages, we start experimenting in order to find the appropriate roasting profile… year after year. What haven’t you accomplished in 10 years? Jordan Dabov: We still haven’t learned how to sell our coffees! We will have to work on that, find a way and build a team who will make it happen. Which one is your favorite coffee? Jordan Dabov: Probably the one I haven’t tasted yet!

It is time that you appreciated Honduras Ventura – the coffee personally chosen by our coffee hunter Jordan Dabov from Oro de Santa Barbara

At the end of April 2018, Jordan Dabov was among 25 jurors from 11 countries who cupped 60 coffee lots in Santa Barbara region of Honduras during Oro de Santa Barbara competition.

What is Oro de Santa Barbara

The competition for specialty coffee Oro de Santa Barbara takes place in Honduras for the 4th year. The national jury had selected coffees that would be cupped by the international jury whose tas was to select the top 10 best specialty coffees from Honduras. It is a great joy and honor for us that our coffee hunter Jordan Dabov was invited to be part of the jury.

“The event in Santa Barbara was of great importance to the farmers there,” commented our founder Jordan Dabov. “The main idea was to show them that they could sell their coffee for a higher price than the usual they get. Most of them had never heard of such auctions, and the high-quality coffee produced in most cases went to the cooperative where it usually was paid for quantity and not quality. In this sense, the event was extremely beneficial for farmers, who thus are motivated to produce better coffee, experiment with the processing of coffee and search for a delicious cup of coffee.”

DABOV outbid other buyers during the auction for three coffees

After the competition a highly competitive auction took place. Jordan Dabov succeeded in outbidding other buyers for three specialty coffees he had tasted during the competition. “I have chosen three lots from two farms,” Jordan Dabov said immediately after the auction. “I have met the farmers and have tasted their coffee. I really wanted their coffee to reach European coffee lovers and to pay a fair price for their work so that they are motivated next year to produce again such a special coffee.”

Coffee-bed-drying Jordan-Dabov-at-Oro-de-Santa-Barbara Farmers-at-Oro-de-Santa-Barbara

Honduras Ventura – melon, melting in dark chocolate

Edwin Ventura’s coffee – Honduras Ventura gained the impressive 86,45 points. It impressed our coffee hunter Jordan Dabov with its wonderful taste, dominated by dark chocolate, melon, and notes of stone fruits. It is winey and has a sweet aroma. The variety is a Catuaí-Paca and comes with a clean cup and balanced acidity.

Young Finca Ventura already grows expressive specialty coffee

Finca Ventura’s coffee Honduras Ventura won the 17th place from Oro de Santa Barbara even though the farm is quite young. Its owner Edwin Ventura opened it on Nov. 28, 2013. But he comes from a family that has grown coffee for already three generations. Today, Finka Ventura grows coffee on 2 hectares with unique agro-ecological conditions.

Despite the unavoidable difficulties at the beginning, Edwin does not give up and just two years after the foundation of his farm, in the 2015/2016 harvest he already enjoys the first batches of specialty coffee, which he processes through a natural and semi-dry process. A year later, the number of micro lots increased to 75%. The average rating for Finca Ventura’s coffees from SCA is 87.5 points. Edwin Ventura intends to grow avocados to diversify the farm’s production and use the by-product of the coffee – cascara, from which they traditionally make tea. He also plans to plant the variety Parainema, Cup of Excellence winner for Best Coffee for 2015 and 2017 in Honduras.

Do you know that…

The department of Santa Barbara registers about 16 thousand coffee growers, those who harvest ten percent of the national production, about one million bags among the municipalities with the highest production are, Atima, San Nicolás, Colinas and also the Santa Bárbara mountain. During the harvest period, the coffee sector generates one million direct and indirect jobs, represents the second source of foreign currency, after remittances, it benefits about 20% of the Honduran population that directly or indirectly depends on the crop.

We are delighted to share with you that we have received at DABOV Specialty Coffee showroom and café Honduras Ventura – a coffee personally selected by our coffee hunter Jordan Dabov during the competition “Oro de Santa Barbara”.

Oro de Santa Barbara took place in April 2018 in the eponymous region in Honduras and was followed by an auction from which DABOV managed to outbid the other buyers for three specialty coffees. We have already received the first one – Honduras Ventura from Finca Ventura. As you already know, Jordan Dabov was part of the international jury of the competition, which goal was to select the ten best specialty coffees from “the land of the reed”.

Honduras Ventura delights with a wonderful taste

Edwin Ventura’s coffee – Honduras Ventura, was rated 86.45 points in the competition. It impressed Jordan Dabov with a wonderful taste, dominated by dark chocolate and red apple, and sweet aroma. The variety is a Catuaí-Paca and comes with a clean cup and balanced acidity. You can now try it and buy it at our showroom and café in downtown Sofia at 58 Lyuben Karavelov Str. “I have chosen three lots from two farms,” Jordan Dabov said immediately after the auction. “I have met the farmers and have tasted their coffee. I really wanted their coffee to reach European coffee lovers and to pay a fair price for their work so that they are motivated next year to produce again such a special coffee. ” The small and medium-sized producers were the big winners in the Oro de Santa Barbara competition, with some selling their coffee to a thousand dollars for dry material. “The event in Santa Barbara was of great importance to the farmers there,” commented our founder Jordan Dabov. “The main idea was to show them that they could sell their coffee for a higher price than the usual they get. Most of them had never heard of such auctions, and the high-quality coffee produced in most cases went to the cooperative where it usually was paid for quantity and not quality. In this sense, the event was extremely beneficial for farmers, who thus are motivated to produce better coffee, experiment with the processing of coffee and search for a delicious cup of coffee.” We look forward to receiving very soon also two more lots of superb Honduras coffee from the El Retiro farm – they are of the exotic Obata variety, which we and you will try for the first time.

We shared our 10 years anniversary with partners and friends over many cups of fragrant specialty coffees

At the beginning of October, DABOV Specialty Coffee turned 10 and celebrated this important for all of our team date with a special event at our roastery in Trebich. We have presented ourselves with one whole day in the company of some of the most important people for us – our partners in Bulgaria who have helped us grow and distribute the culture of specialty coffee in Bulgaria. Of course, this special celebration would not have been possible without the participation of other very important people – the farmers, who have been sharing with us the fruits of those past 10 crops, and since geographically it was not possible for them to be in Trebich, they were present on our birthday with their inspiring and unique coffees. And as we are sharing this news with you, we would like you to join us—you, our loyal customers–because without you and your support during these first 10 years, we haven’t given up and continue finding, roasting and delivering the best coffees in the world.

What happened on DABOV Specialty Coffee’s birthday

We celebrated our birthday they way we do everything – busy working but with a sense of celebration because we love what we do every day, week after week, month after month and year after year. Our founder Jordan Dabov demonstrated how we roast the specialty coffees in our Probat roasting machine so that our guests could learn more about the world of coffee and the steps coffee takes until it reaches your cup. What better than exploring the taste of freshly roasted specialty coffee? We followed roasting with a presentation of filtration methods and tasting of different coffees from our catalog. It was a great pleasure and joy to receive the biggest gift from our partners, apart from their desire to continue working together – their opinion. Here’s what some of them shared and wished us: Elitsa and Ivan, owners of Take a Cake Take a Cake and Dabov Specialty Coffee in search of real value for the connoisseurs of high-quality pastries and real, delicious coffee. Dabov Specialty Coffee walk off the beaten path. They search for, taste and buy unique green coffees and roast them with professionalism and imagination. The result is impressive and is all there in your cup – a coffee drink to fall in love with. Take a Cake strongly recommends Dabov Specialty Coffee for your establishment and home. Maria from Fabrika Duga DABOV Specialty Coffee helped Maria understand that coffee is not a drink with just a bitter taste and there are many interesting methods to extract coffee, not even a bit less tasty than espresso. Five years ago she tried DABOV’s coffee and refused to drink anything else, especially in Bulgaria. – Why do you work with us? Because we believe DABOV Specialty Coffee sells the best coffee in Bulgaria, roasts it in the best possible way, and the distribution is on the high level that we expect. We trust their professional opinion to choose the best coffee equipment for us and we know we can rely on them for assistance if we need it. – How have we proven ourselves in time? You have proven to be good partners in raising coffee culture in Bulgaria into a higher level; you are people who approach their products with great attention; your job is your passion, and this is quite obvious. – What do you think about the company? DABOV Specialty Coffee has become a recognizable brand among fans of caffeinated beverages. Brand, which is a symbol of quality and special attitude to every bean that travels thousands of kilometers before arriving at their roastery. All this because of their team that is absolutely committed to its work. Ivaylo Atanasov – By the Way Dear friends, I would like to cordially wish you the next 10 years to pass with the ease with which you brew wonderful coffee every day, and the aroma and aftertaste to be always with a touch of sweetness. The same sweetness that remains with us as we work together as partners. Continue to be as fresh and wide awake as the effect that your coffee has on us. It is a pleasure and a privilege for us to be partners and to feel this every morning in the best possible way. With tremendous respect for you and your work, Ivailo Atanasov Yana Petkova, a wine taster and journalist with WSET diploma, founder of “Bulgarian Wine Academy“, member of the team of the Bulgarian wine media DiVino. My serious and conscious relationship with coffee dates back to that with wine: it started approximately in 1994. And so did the frustration that I can not find a good coffee in our country. My then job required that I travel constantly, and names such as Yirgacheffe and Jamaica Blue Mountain Coffee were better known to me than Bordeaux, Côtes du Rhône or Napa Valley, and there was always a package of good coffee in my suitcase. I always find key people and places for me on the internet – where I found the coffees and the philosophy of Jordan Dabov, which in 2010 was called “My Gourmet World”. Jordan Dabov saved me from the demeaning task of asking friends to bring me coffee when traveling abroad and helped me realize that the coffees of a world-famous American chain are not some of the best. More importantly, he has helped me form my coffee quality criterion, making me rethink my own taste and he helped me reaffirm what I have always known about myself, namely that espresso is a method, and filtration and French press – attitude. (I still haven’t given up the taste of brown sugar in the coffee, but maybe one day I will.) /wp-content/uploads/2018/10/Dabov-Specialty-Coffee-cupcakes-10-years.jpg I have never wasted time in wondering whether our Grape Central wine bar would offer Dabov’s coffee because I always knew it would. Good wine, good food, and good coffee are the three pillars of a full and happy life. Today, my work is related to the cultivation of taste in another equally sensible, deep and multilayered matter as coffee and I know how important the right quality criterion is. I still have to travel a lot on business and unchanging points of my program in a city are no longer just visits to certain wine bars and restaurants but also to Specialty Coffee places. Jordan Dabov’s skill in selecting quality coffee blends is at the same level as this of the most innovative and educated coffee shop owners in Paris, Copenhagen, Barcelona, London, and the Baltic region. His participation as a member of the international jury of eight Cup of Excellence editions – the most prestigious competition and coffee auction in the world – is not only a recognition for his personal qualities as a cupper and coffee seller but also for our country. /wp-content/uploads/2018/10/Dabov-Specialty-Coffee-birthday-delmarte.jpg /wp-content/uploads/2018/10/Dabov-Specialty-Coffee-10-years-birthday.jpg /wp-content/uploads/2018/10/Dabov-Specialty-Coffee-birthday-with-partners.jpg Red Devil Catering Mr. Dabov is the avant-garde who has remodeled the coffee perception in Bulgaria. Thanks to him and his team, the attitude towards this drink has acquired different dimensions, and different depths because they demonstrate its vast nature step by step. He is also an inspiration for many other professionals who want to provide their clients with a quality product. I do not think there is another name as synonymous to coffee culture as his in Bulgaria. Congratulations! Good luck! Hats off to your boldness! /wp-content/uploads/2018/10/Dabov-Specialty-Coffee-Probat-Roasting-Machine.jpg

Enjoy the harmony of ripe red berries, fresh mandarin and honey sweetness in the aftertaste of Guatemala’s bio coffee from San Miguel region

Have you ever tasted Guatemala San Miguel – Bio? If you are not, let us tell you its fascinating story.

When visiting Guatemala for the first time, our coffee hunter, Jordan Dabov, was curious whether he would share the opinion of industry’s experts from all over the world that the coffee from this Central American country is one of the richest in aroma and variety of flavours. Luckily, his opinion was not only confirmed but also earned specific dimensions after Jordan met Señor Dariusch Echeverria from Finca Santa Rita, San Miguel Region.

Where is Finca Santa Rita

Finca Santa Rita is in the San Miguel region, located on the outskirts of one of the famous coffee growing regions – the Chimaltenango area. The farm is set at 1,800 meters in height, and breeds Arabica Bourbon. Finca Santa Rita boasts a rich history, as Jordan has learned. Founded in the 1860s by Dariush’s great-great-grandfather, who has been President of the country, it has survived glorious and extremely difficult moments, and today it is proud of its Specialty Coffee. And not only of it. Dariush is a fifth-generation coffee farmer. His family speaks the language of coffee first and Spanish comes only second. Just by talking to him, one can learn a lot about growing really good coffee. Although it is situated only a hundred kilometers from the capital of Guatemala, it seems that time has stopped in the eponymous main city of Chimaltenango. This however, is only beneficial for the locals. The sense community is neither lost nor overshadowed by the 21st century alienation, and perhaps it is also one of the important reasons why Darius Echeverria’s farm has developed so successfully.

Tradition and innovation

Dariush is almost as obsessed with high quality as is Jordan. Both share common values – in Santa Rita, they have embraced sustainability and grow coffee with an utmost respect for nature. Unsurprisingly, their coveted coffee Guatemala San Miguel – Bio, has an Organic certificate, Rainforest Alliance certificate and a special Bird Friendly certificate from the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center. The farm is afforested with a variety of local tree species, with coffee growing in the shade of bananas. Perhaps it is no coincidence that the name of Guatemala, which comes from the Nahuat language, means “a place with many trees”. There is plenty of fish in the natural water sources in the farm but fishing and hunting are forbidden to preserve local flora and fauna. The coffee is wet processed – the water used for this is subsequently filtered so as not to pollute the rivers, and the pulp of the coffee cherries is used as an organic fertilizer.


Coffee is Guatemala number 1 export commodity

Today, coffee is grown in 20 of Guatemala’s 22 departments, with around 270,000 hectares planted under coffee, almost all of which (98%) is shade grown. In each area, the coffee is grown at a suitable height for the variety, and only varieties suitable for the respective soil and climatic conditions in the region are planted.

What taste you will find in Guatemala San Miguel – Bio

Still, let’s talk about the coffee itself! Because it is precisely the taste of the coffee that attracted the attention of our coffee hunter. Guatemala San Miguel – Bio has an exceptionally balanced taste and the red berries and mandarin notes in the flavor. Rich body honeyed sweetness in the cup, which remains in the aftertaste. For excellent results, you can prepare it in V60, Hemex, and French press. It is suitable also for Espresso lovers who prefer fruity flavor because it is exactly Guatemala San Miguel – Bio that we use for some of our Espresso blends to infuse them with its unique fruity taste.

Do you know that…

Guatemala has been producing coffee since the 19th century thanks to … German immigrant pioneers who first began to cultivate it in the country. Today, almost a quarter of the 12 million population sustain itself by coffee. Guatemala annually produces 3.5 million bags. Coffee from this Central American country is among the best in the world, according to specialists – especially high-growing (over 1300m as mountain areas occupy more than half of Guatemala’s territory) and volcanic soils in its southern part.

DABOV Specialty Coffee’s experienced coffee hunter Jordan Dabov has not chosen by chance the Brazilian pearl – Brazil Alianca from Mogiana for your cup

Already enchanted by the world-famous coffee region in Brazil – Mogiana, Jordan visits it at least once a year since he has discovered Fazenda Aliança where our Brazil Alianca coffee is produced. Although there are many interesting coffee growing farms in the state of São Paulo, it is hard to find another one that stands out like Aliança.

Excellent conditions for growing Specialty Coffee

Owned and run by Renato Ishikawa, a Brazilian of Japanese origin, the farm spreads to 200 hectares, located on an average of 1,000 m above sea level. When visiting Aliança for the first time, Jordan was impressed by the fact that even though the plantation originates from 1882, it was only when Renato-san took the farm in his own hands in 1995 when the farm became synonymous with Specialty Coffee. As a matter of fact, the owner of Aliança initially approached the world of coffee as a hobby because he was already a successful entrepreneur in another area. But he soon realized that his land is blessed by extremely favorable coffee-breeding conditions – something that Jordan also noticed – fertile soils, numerous water sources, hilly terrain, and mild climate. That is why Renato dedicated himself to coffee with all his heart.

Fazenda Aliança is synonymous with sustainable development

Fazenda Aliança’s coffee is grown in line with the rules of sustainable development and social responsibility. What makes it unique, though, is its rich know-how and production practices with which it has become a role model all over Brazil. Natural resources are used rationally, for example, wastewater from the processing of coffee is recycled. Environmental projects are being developed to conserve biodiversity in the region, as well as social initiatives that gradually improve the lives of farm employees.
Renato shared with Jordan that even though he is first and foremost a businessman who should be concerned with the profit from all his endeavors, he cherishes clean air, uncontaminated water, and birds’ songs in the afternoons in Fazenda Aliança. The RFA and UTZ certificates are a proof of the sustainable development of the farm.

Quality coffee mainly exported to Japan

Fazenda Aliança mainly produces Arabica Catuaí, known for the sweetness in its taste. During many of his already habitual visits, Jordan witnesses the harvesting and processing of coffee on the spot – 60% goes through dry processing. All types of coffees that Jordan has tasted have different characteristics but are united by their high quality. It is no surprise that more than 90% of Aliança’s highest quality production is sold every year in Japan. But despite the competition, DABOV Specialty Coffee manages to secure about 10% of this unique coffee. How is this possible?
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DABOV Specialty Coffee has secured special conditions from Aliança

After numerous visits and talks with Renato-san, Jordan have chosen the variety, the location, the colour of the cherry at the time of picking, the maturing period (our coffee matures much longer than the other and is waiting for a certain moment of maturity), the processing method of coffee and how the coffee to be dried and packed. When such a personal commitment between a manufacturer and a buyer, the client can be sure that he will receive a coffee of superior quality.

What is the taste of the Brazil Alianca’s coffee?

The very first delivery from Fazenda Aliança left everyone in DABOV Specialty Coffee showroom and café pleasantly amazed and delighted. We could only agree with Jordan’s notes in his diary, taken when he first tasted Brazil Alianca: “Very easy drinkable coffee, start and finish – very sweet. I recommend this coffee to coffee lovers with sweet and mild acidity preferences. Easy, daily cup of coffee.”
Then, it was up to our roaster to find the perfect roasting profile to highlight the characteristics of Brazil Alianca coffee without compromising their harmonious integrity in taste. The task was challenging because the notes of the typical Brazilian sugar cane in the taste proved to be difficult to capture and highlight. But at last, perfection has been achieved. We offer you a cup with predominant notes of chocolate, raisins and sugar cane, and a milky aftertaste.

Did you know that…

The name of Renato Ishikawa should not surprise you – yes, he is a Brazilian of Japanese origin. As strange as it may seem, the largest Japanese immigrant community lives in Brazil of all places. The first emigrants from the Land of the Rising Sun landed in Brazil in 1908 precisely to meet the needs of workers in coffee plantations and fleeing hunger in their homeland. Many of them never went back and instead settled in the state of São Paulo.

Best of Panama auction 2018 auction has just finished with record prices gathered and Dabov Specialty Coffee has acquired one more great coffee for its catalog!

Lamastus Family Estates that won the two first places on the Best of Panama 2018 auction for Geisha Washed and Natural earned more than $150 000 for 90 kg of coffee. This is an amazing price in the world of Specialty Coffee.
As we have already informed you, Best of Panama is one of the most significant events for the world of specialty coffee. This year the competition was held for the 22 time and gave the world the opportunity to get closer to some of the most exclusive cafes such as the incomparable Geisha. The industry experts confirm their opinion that 2018 was a spectacular year for the specialty coffees tasted and rated in Best of Panama.
The prices went crazy on the Best of Panama 2018 auction after last year’s $601 paid for the best coffee in Panama from Jason Kew – an Australian Chinese coffee hunter.
The Best of Panama 2018 auction lasted for more than 8 hours and finished with record prices. 49 lots of really special coffee varieties were bought by some of the best coffee trading companies in the world and brought the farmers that have cultivated them the deserved payback.

Do you know that Dabov Specialty Coffee was one of them? We succeeded to secure lot №16 from the washed geishas from Agricola Geisha, produced by Dona Elvira. Our coffee hunter Jordan Dabov gave it 92,50 points!

As you remember, he was the only judge from Europe in this year’s competition – a rare and hard-earned privilege that many industry insiders from all over the world still can only dream about.
Prices started from $30 per pound (approximately $60 per kg) and the record price was paid for the best coffee in 2018, found in Panama, in the Lamastus Family Estate – the Natural Geisha which was bought for $803 per pound (approximately $1600 per kg).

The prices of the geishas on Best of Panama 2018 auction went crazy starting from $50 per pound ($100 per kg)

All lots from the famous Esmeralda farm led by the Peterson family were traded for very high prices:
Esmeralda Geisha washed – 9th place was sold for $140 per pound
Esmeralda Geisha natural – 3rd place was sold for $151 per pound
Esmeralda Traditional washed – 1st place was sold for $100 per pound

Who won the best coffees in the world from Best of Panama’s online auction?

Only a few companies dared to bid in the auction. Some of them started showing interest in more than three lots and finishing with none. Most of the companies are from the Asian market, some from the USA and Europe.
The total sum in the auction paid by the buyers was around $550 000 paid for 109 boxes of 50 pounds of green coffee.
Three times the bids were placed at the last possible second and this infused the auction with more tension.

Do you know that…

Geisha coffee neither comes from Panama nor does its name have a Japanese influence. It originates from Gesha, Ethiopia but it was in Panama where this variety has blossomed because of the high altitude and the combination of a climate and soil perfect for its needs. A little more than a decade ago it attracted the attention of coffee experts worldwide after it won the Best of Panama competition in 2004.
Read more about the winning coffees from Best of Panama 2018 on our website. Check out the official page of Best of Panama as well!
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