My friend Casey gave me a half pound of Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee beans for Christmas, and today I performed a taste test against my favored Guatemalan Huehuetenango. I first prepared a small pot of the Huehuetenango, grinding the beans fairly finely and making enough for five six-ounce cups (three ten-ounce cups). I drank two ten-ounce cups to accustom myself to the flavor, and then set aside the third cup. Then I prepared a small pot of the Blue Mountain, as above. I drank all three cups, and then finished with the third cup of the Huehuetenango as a final comparison.
Overall, the Blue Mountain is a fine coffee, smooth with no bitterness and a touch of floral flavor. But I did not find it to be superior to the Huehuetenango. Perhaps it’s because both coffees are gown in volcanic soils at high altitudes, but, at least to me, they have a similar taste. I appreciate the gift from my friend Casey, but I do not think the Blue Mountain is worth the exorbitant cost ($45 to $60 per pound). I will stick to my Huehuetenango ( $17 per pound), and the comparable Costa Rican Tarrazu and Tanzanian Mbeya coffees, as well as the distinctive Ethiopian Yirgacheffe for a real change of pace.