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  • Writer's pictureBarbara Neumeyer

"Exploring the Flavorful Delights of Janson Coffee in Volcan, Panama"

Gary and I have talked a lot about having to get out and try new things, it's hard to promote things to do while visiting us if we ourselves have not done them. We both have wanted for some time to do a Coffee Tour. This past week we finally got around to do just that.

Our friend Kristine came along as well as her Uncle Roger, visiting from Switzerland.

The founder, Carl Janson immigrated from Sweden in 1926 at the age of 21. It wasn't until 1990 that Carl's sons took over the business and officially founded "Janson Coffee". Now, three generations later, Janson Coffee continues to grow as a family business.


The beginning of the tour started with an introduction of the variety of coffee plants that Janson uses for their coffees, Catuai and Caturra, are both used in the Janson Coffee in the red bag, which is our daily coffee that we personally use and is fantastic.

Pacamara is a hybrid plant and has a very floral aroma with hints of citrus undertones, it also has a unique ability to change in flavor as the coffee cools off.

Finally, the famous Panama Geisha. There are 2 types of Geisha Coffee; washed and natural. Both types are from the same plant but are processed differently. Both have their own flavors and aromas, the natural keeps the skin and pulp through the whole process, start to finish, the washed Geisha has the skin and pulp removed at the beginning. The by-product of the washed Geisha is used for Geisha tea, which is a taste you have to savor for yourself.


We learned about the drying of the Cherries, the "African Drying" boxes to the roasting of the bean, the whole process of making coffee was explained.

Jason Coffee is sorted by hand, the process is done twice, they are looking for "yellow" beans, these beans are called "peanuts" and it is the only part of the process that is thrown away, as there is nothing they can re-purpose from it.

The one thing that the guide explained to us, and Janson is very proud of, is the fact that there is no waste in producing their coffee and sustainability is the highest priority. The skin and pulp from the cherries are used in a number of ways, from mulch to fuel for their roasters. They also offer a "sauna" for use to the smaller coffee producers that do not have room or the ability in their fincas to dry their cherries.


We were a bit sad that we were unable to actually tour a coffee finca , but we were able to do a coffee tasting. This was eye opening for all of us. Like wine, the nature of coffee differs based on temperature of the water, how long the coffee rests and how the coffee is prepared. There are different "notes" to the coffee: vegetal, nutty, fruity, floral. We had all four of the above-mentioned coffees as well as the Geisha Tea, some we enjoyed immensely, others not so much, and we all did not agree on which was which. But we all had a wonderful time, and the 2 hours from start to finish was well spent.

We highly recommend a coffee tour while visiting Panama, Janson is only one of many coffee producers in Panama, but it is our coffee that we enjoy every morning. In the big scheme, Panama produces little of the world's coffee, our producers take great pride and care in their production and Chiriqui Province has some of the best.

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Mar 17

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