Kit Steinkellner
February 11, 2017 9:55 am
Warner Bros
Warner Bros

Our love for coffee knows no bounds. We are hardcore Lorelai and Rory when it comes to our devotion to the King of Caffeinated Beverages.

But recently we heard about an $18 cup of joe in NYC that Eater has declared “The most expensive cup of brew in the country.” Which, of course, has us wondering if we love coffee enough to basically drop twenty bucks on one cup.

So what is it about the coffee from Extraction Lab, a coffee shop in Sunset Park, Brooklyn, that makes it so gosh-dang expensive?

Sure, there are the computerized steam and vacuum system-equipped Steampunk coffee machines that can do French press, pour over, and Chemex. They cost a whopping $13,900 for two machines. But the super-expensive machines aren’t what makes Extraction cup of the good stuff so expensive. It’s the super-expensive beans.

Extraction gets its beans from Ninety Plus Gesha Estates. Gesha is a pretty rare variety of beans. The varietal has been known to sell at auction for $350 a pound, unroasted.

Note, this doesn’t mean that every gesha cup has to be almost twenty bucks. A slightly less expensive strain is available at Extraction for $15. On the west coast, you can get a cup of gesha in San Francisco for $15 and in San Diego for $11. Which is still, admittedly, 3-5 times more than you’re used to spending on coffee. But cheaper IS cheaper.

The question becomes, of course, is gesha worth the bananas-inflated price? And the answer is…maybe. According to Eater, baristas love the complexity of the flavor. But your average joe-drinker might find it too light, gentle, and tea-like to truly satisfy a java craving.

So keep that all in mind if you ever see a cup of gesha on coffee shop menu. And if you do decide to take the plunge, we’re sure your bank account will forgive you… eventually.

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