If coffee growing was an Olympic event, it'd be a marathon not a sprint. And not just because Africa totally dominates. Being a coffee superpower requires years of economic, infrastructural, and government investment. Plus a bean-friendly terrior, farmers dedicated to quality control, and a trust in industry buyers to bring the beans to the masses.
So, which countries shell out the best beans? To get an idea, we asked a group of 11 roasters and writers to weigh in. Obviously, with all of the variables involved, naming favorite countries is not an easy task. Almost all of our contributors expressed hesitation about throwing their hat into the ring (too much Deadly Grounds, perhaps), and one roaster even pulled their choices for fear of upsetting their farmers.
Naturally, personal bias in taste, education, and life experience influence one's picks, but by polling a diverse cross-section of the coffee world, we feel like this is an honest pulse of the industry, as taken from some of its finest minds. Dare we say 'definitive'? To the dismay of the comments section, we dare. Here are the results, with the reasoning below.