Geisha is giving hard times to the coffee industry. It's expensive, hardly anyone knows where it really comes from and it's a "standard competing coffee".

Especially when it comes to the last one, the conversations lightens up. Recently, James Hoffman wrote a wonderful piece about Geisha in competition. And it's remarkable how many people have published something about Geisha since then.

It seems easy to compete with a varietal like this. It gets high scores on a cupping table. Has distinct flavour notes. And for years it is the Geisha winning in competitions.

But at the end of the day, it's not entirely fair to compare Geisha to Bourbon or any other.

I would love to see other coffees win competitions. It was exciting to see Dan Fellows winning UKBC with Heirloom from Ethiopia.

Same thing with Jem Challender and his exotic Javanica for Brewers Cup. For Worlds though, he switched to Geisha. Which again, is absolutely understandable from competitor's view.

There comes the idea of having several competitions for different varieties. One for Geisha, one for Caturra, Bourbon and so on. But I can't imagine this in practice. That's an extreme fragmentation, we would end up with only several people entering "a variety competition".

Restricting rules
Then there was a thought of banning Geisha. But let's say it would pass (which I don't believe in). Imagine the decrease in demand for Geisha. Baristas who prepare for competition, use a lot of coffee. Some people even consider it "Waste". Across the world, all these baristas add to a pretty nice percentage of general demand for Geisha. Especially considering not so high popularity in cafes and retail sales. I don't have any numbers, but I assume farmers would be affected by the ban.

Also, banning anything in the competition is against the idea of competing in the first place. That's where people experiment, come up with new ideas, share their knowledge. I'm for making the rules less strict. I love the idea of freeing milk beverages. Flat white is way cooler than Cappuccino, isn't it? The next big thing I want to see is letting baristas adjust machines - temperature, pressure and maybe even water.

Those parameters have been fixed for years. However, it is changing across the industry. I believe that through adjusting these variables baristas would be able to bring new life to different varieties.

Maybe it's that we need to see another variety to win. To set a precedent. To encourage people to use different coffee and increase its chances.


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