The awards ceremony took place on a Friday, April 9 in online mode, after the jury at COE-approved Global Coffee Centers drew up a long-list of 35 finalists to a short-list of 23 participants where each coffee sample scored at least 87 points. Two of those coffees, both washed-process Gesha varieties, reached a 90+ points plank, with a top lot from Nariño-based producer Pablo Andrés Guerrero with 90.61 points.
"I decided to go stricter with the selection of the cherries and control of the fermentation time this year to get the properties I want to achieve," explained Guerrero in the announcement from the Alliance for Coffee Excellence (ACE).
The Cup of Excellence 2021 featured a wide range of coffee varieties, regions, processing methods and even growers, which is somewhat expected from the Colombia region. The list of winners also included:
- Six women (twice as many as was in last year's competition)
- Participants from seven growing regions (Nariño, Huila, Cauca, Antioquia, Quindio, Cundinamarca and Tolima)
- Six different processing methods (honey, anaerobic honey, washed, anaerobic washed, natural, anaerobic natural)
- Eight coffee varieties or cultivars (Gesha, Castillo, Bourbon, Bourbon Rosado, Bourbon Aji, Chiroso, Caturra and Tabi).
The winning lots will be presented in the online auction organized by ACE on Thursday, May 20 — more information about the auction can be found on the ACE website. There are seven more Cup of Excellence auctions planned this year. The expected schedule is:
- Nicaragua — June 29
- Ethiopia — July 7
- Mexico — July 15
- Guatemala — July 27
- Costa Rica — July 29
- El Salvador — August 10
- Honduras — August 19