Jamaican Blue Buying Guide & Review (Buy Smart)

Want to get your hands on the world’s premium coffee? Read these tips to stay away from scams.

If you identify as a coffee connoisseur, then you already know a whole lot about the different types of coffee beans the world has to offer. But as with everything else, you always have room to learn unique facts about different topics. For instance, you might already recognize the two main species of coffee in the form of arabica and robusta. But you may not know about the hundreds of subtypes they offer to coffee enthusiasts. By appreciating the fact that you can always learn new things regarding different topics, you cannot only appreciate new and important details, but you can also steer clear from the harmful consequences of disinformation.

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The objective of this little prelude is to establish the importance of learning crucial information, especially regarding topics that you are passionate about. Take the simple aspect of coffee, for instance. If someone asks you about the most expensive coffee in the world, you may already have the answer ready as the ever-popular Jamaican Blue coffee – which will be correct in every sense of the word. But when it comes to the question of how and where to buy Jamaican Blue coffee on your own, you might feel like standing at the crossroads of different options to choose from. In this case, not having enough information could actually put you at risk of losing money. 

Also known as the Jamaica Blue Mountain (JBM) or Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee, it is not only one of the most expensive coffees in the world, but it is also one that is very hard to purchase. It is not because of a limitation of listings to choose from or a shortage of places to buy it instantly. Rather, it is due to how the coffee’s staggering ratio of supply and demand creates a very lucrative market for scammers and bad parties to sell cheap knockoffs for a sky-high price. 

That is why, whenever you are out to decide where to buy Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee, you can find yourself going through a plethora of options at once. From Amazon to eBay, and from local vendors to international establishments, you can find a lot of listings with one quick search. But it doesn’t always mean that you are going to buy one of the most expensive coffees in the world in all its originality. The very scarcity of Jamaican Blue coffee exposes you to third-grade knockoffs. The worst part? You might not even recognize that you have been scammed even after paying a premium price. 

Keeping this in mind, we are here to explain all that you need to know about where to buy Jamaican Blue coffee, how to tell the original apart from the knockoff, and most importantly, how to identify a scamming seller when you see one. Following these tips will help you spend your money the right way, while also allowing you to enjoy one of the most expensive coffees in the world in all its glory. 

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First Things First, A Refresher on Jamaican Blue Coffee

Even when you know a thing or two about Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee beans, there’s no harm in taking a refresher to learn the most crucial details of this premium type of coffee. After all, knowing this information will only help you identify the original in an easier manner, which will lead you to make your purchases more confidently. 

History of the Coffee Type

Jamaican Blue coffee was first grown in the Blue Mountain region of Jamaica in 1728, which was a long while before it earned the moniker of one of the most expensive coffees in the world. But that is where this premium coffee got its distinct name, which has now become the brand title for many sellers of this coffee type. 

At the time of its cultivation, the Jamaican Blue coffee grew like any other coffee in the world. Locals treated the grow while having a normal perspective towards it, and consumed it as such. But it took only a few decades before coffee enthusiasts all over the world came together to appreciate the distinct taste and lack of bitterness that  Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee brought to the table. That’s when the coffee’s status started to develop as one of the most sought after coffee types in the world. 

Cultivation and Elevation Limits

Here, it is also crucial to know that like most other premium coffees in the world,  Jamaican Blue coffee also belongs to the arabica family. This automatically classifies it as a coffee type that needs to be grown at high elevation. 

To be specific, any coffee that’s grown in the Blue Mountain region of Jamaica needs an elevation of over 3,000 feet to be certified as Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee. Anything less than that doesn’t classify it as one of the most expensive coffees in the world, even if it’s grown at the center of the region. 

Technically, the elevation limit for coffee beans to classify as Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee is up to 5,500 feet. Since any lands above this elevation level now hold the status of national forests, cultivation of coffee is cut-off at this limit. 

Area Limits

According to the Coffee Industry Board of Jamaica, there are a few other standards that hold true for coffee beans before they are certified as Jamaican Blue Mountain. Apart from the elevation, all Jamaican Blue coffee beans should grow within the Blue Mountain range, which is spread across three parishes in the country, namely St. Andrew, Portland, and St. Thomas. 

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This is very crucial information to remember and refer back to if you are torn between where to buy Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee. Any vendor that doesn’t specify these regions or mentions any other regions of growth isn’t selling you actual Jamaican Blue Mountain, but a lower grade coffee. That is where you know to turn away from such vendors and find original Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee elsewhere. 

The Coffee Industry Board of Jamaica also makes it clear that out of the 28,000 acres of land that’s devoted to coffee production, only a little under one-third of it or 9,000 acres falls within the Blue Mountain Coffee range. Any coffee that is grown outside of it doesn’t have the distinct taste and aroma that is associated with one of the most expensive coffees in the world.

Taste and Aroma

The reason why the Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee is so sought after in the world is not just its exclusivity, but its distinct taste and aroma that makes it stand out among many other high-end coffee types. 

Arabica coffee is known to have a milder taste and way less bitterness than robusta coffee. By default, most Arabica coffee beans sport a distinct flavor and aroma. But Jamaican Blue coffee takes it to a whole new level. 

The coffee beans are blue and green in appearance, which instantly sets them apart from the traditional brown hue that’s ubiquitous in even the most high end of coffees. But apart from this distinction in the appearance, Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee beans are also known for their exceptionally milder, sweeter yet clean taste as well as their specific aroma. These coffee beans also boast of milder acidity, which once again brings out their original flavor in full force. To be clear, no other coffee comes close to what the Jamaican Blue coffee offers in terms of these qualities. There are more expensive coffees alright, but they don’t provide you with the distinct taste or aroma of Jamaican Blue.

That is the reason why the Coffee Industry Board of Jamaica is so strict about regulating this valuable export of the country. It is also why you should be wary of scams that try to make money by skipping these regulations and selling low-grade coffee beans on the pretense of Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee. 

The scam selling schemes involving Jamaican Blue Mountain, or not involving it for that matter, often sell coffee beans that are imported from Jamaica. But these coffee beans are either not from the Blue Mountain region itself or not grown at the level of elevation that is defined above. As a result, these coffee beans still have the association of the area tied to them. However, they don’t actually qualify for the label of Jamaican Blue coffee. 

These lower grade coffee beans often bear the following labels. 

  • Jamaica High Mountain – grown between 1,500 and 3,000 feet.
  • Jamaica Supreme or Jamaica Low Mountain – grown under 1,500 feet.

This doesn’t make them bad. They are still arabica beans that have a mild taste of their own. But of course, buying them for the price of premium grade Jamaican Blue Mountain makes you the victim of a scam scheme. 

Which brings us to the topic of where to buy Jamaican Blue coffee safely. 

What to Look Out for While Buying Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee

By now, we have mentioned the Coffee Industry Board of Jamaica a few times. It is this body that actually regulates and employs strict regulations of growing Jamaican Blue coffee beans in the region. But it doesn’t stop there. This organization is also responsible for awarding the coveted Jamaica Blue Mountain certification to all coffee beans that meet the set standards. Only then the respective vendors go ahead with exporting these beans.  

Check the Certification

Whenever you are about to spend your hard-earned money on one of the most expensive coffees in the world, make sure that the brand you are buying is actually checked by the Coffee Industry Board of Jamaica for its quality and authenticity. 

It is important because the board doesn’t blindly certify exported coffee beans to hold the sought after title of Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee. From appearance to the aroma, and from growth conditions to flavor notes, it checks each and every detail before letting a coffee go through the export process. 

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Keeping this in mind, look out for the explicit statement that defines the coffee you are about to buy is actually certified from the board. This should be the first thing you are looking for when deciding where to buy Jamaican Blue coffee. 

Check the Label

As defined above, some bad players in the industry sell lower grade Jamaican Mountain coffee on the pretense of it being Jamaican Blue coffee. That’s why, you need to be very specific on checking that the label of the coffee actually says something along the lines of Jamaican Blue Coffee or Jamaica Blue Mountain coffee. 

If you notice the packaging or the product description singing praises of the coffee and swearing its origin as Blue Mountain but not actually specifying it on the label, then there’s something fishy going on. That’s when you should look for your Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee elsewhere. 

Another similar instance is when you pay a premium price for a Jamaican coffee blend, which is not 100% original Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee. You should stay away from these brands as well if you want to enjoy Jamaican Blue in its purest form.

Only Buy Whole Coffee Beans

One of the worst things you can do is to buy Jamaican Blue coffee in the form of coffee grounds. Think about it. You are buying one of the most expensive coffees in the world, and you are paying to get it in the form of coffee grounds that are scientifically prone to lose their flavor with oxidation. That’s similar to throwing your money down the drain, and any coffee enthusiast would easily call it a crime against the most premium coffee in the world. 

It’s because even when coffee is packaged in airtight material, it can be affected by oxidation once you open the packaging. Airtight containers can only do so much, and with a coffee as expensive as Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee, taking the risk is definitely not worth it. 

But apart from subjecting your coffee to go stale over time, buying ground Jamaican Blue coffee also leaves you prone to risks. Since you have already eliminated the factor of appearance by choosing ground coffee, you cannot tell the difference between authentic Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee and another mountain coffee as accurately as you can when you are comparing whole coffee beans.

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Keeping this in mind, make sure that you are always choosing whole coffee beans when it comes to buying one of the most expensive coffees in the world.

Purchase a Small Quantity

Even when you do find a place that offers you certified, clearly labeled, and whole bean Jamaican Blue coffee, it is best not to go all out and spend your money on a big bag of it. Finding where to buy Jamaican Blue coffee is just a step in the process of finding a vendor that you can trust. It is not the final stop by any means. 

Working on this thought process, make it a point to order only the smallest quantity of Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee that you can find with your chosen brand. This ensures that you are not gambling with your money all at once. Once you receive the package, you can test its authenticity and taste along with the fact of whether you like it or not. From there, you can easily order your Jamaican Blue in a quantity that you require. 

Get it Checked from a Professional

Even when you have made sure that every factor checks out from your chosen vendor, getting a second opinion when you actually receive your Jamaican Blue coffee doesn’t hurt. After all, buying one of the most expensive coffees in the world isn’t a small task. Making sure that you have done it right is only prudent. 

Here, you could ask the opinion of any coffee connoisseur who has past experience in tasting Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee by making them a fresh brew from the coffee beans you bought. This would ensure that you have made the right decision and bought 100% authentic coffee for your money. This is an additional step. But if you have never tasted Jamaican Blue coffee before and this is your first rodeo, then this is also crucial in brushing your own coffee identification skills. 

After all, the worst that could happen is you get the answer about the coffee not being as original as you thought. But in the long run, it would keep you from making the same mistake again. It would also help you find an authentic vendor all by yourself the next time you are looking to buy Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee. 

Where to Actually Buy the Coffee? 

After learning all of this information about Jamaican Blue coffee, it is time to find out where to buy Jamaican Blue coffee that actually fulfills all of these requirements to a T.

The simple answer? Find your vendors on Amazon.

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There are a few reasons behind this very predictable ideology.

  • You get the reviews of other users who have bought and tried the coffee.
  • You get the support from Amazon to return the item according to certain policies.
  • You get an array of choices to select from without feeling extra nervous about your decision.

According to our research, the following brands currently stand out among the top Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee sellers. When you look at the prices, the most expensive coffee in the world actually doesn’t look so out of range when compared to a cup bought from a coffee shop.

Volcanica Coffee 100% Pure Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee

As the name suggests, Volcanica Coffee offers a whole bean and freshly roasted coffee. It comes in a 16oz bag, where each medium roast is no more than 30 days old. 

The coffee stands out as Amazon’s Choice and has 4.3 stars against 483 ratings. It is available for $89.99 per pack. It is certified 100% Jamaican Blue coffee, which means that you can buy it with the utmost confidence.

Cubico 100% Pure Jamaican Blue Coffee

Cubico Coffee is another brand that offers premium grade 100% whole bean Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee that is freshly roasted while also being affordable. 

The medium roast coffee comes in 12oz and 16oz packaging while sporting 4.2 stars against 271 ratings. It comes in $54.95/12oz and $69.95/16oz packages.

Green Coffee Traders 100% Pure Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee

Green Coffee Traders also come through as an Amazon’s Choice vendor that offers 100% whole bean Jamaican Blue coffee. It comes in a city roast form where the coffee has turned a deep brown shade. 

The coffee is classified as Grade 1, which makes it a premium grade coffee. It comes in a 16oz packaging which is priced at $35. It has 4.2 stars against 66 ratings, which makes it a highly rated, non-blend yet still affordable coffee.

Choose Whichever Coffee You Like, But Make Sure to Follow the Buying Tips 

Apart from the brand that is mentioned above, you can also explore other brands over Amazon. But for the most part, they offer a “blend” coffee that is not 100% Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee. 

On the other hand, these 3 brands stand out as offering nothing but the purest Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee. You should make the decision according to what suits you the best. But ensure to follow the buying tips outlined above to vet each brand on your own as well. 

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This will give the experience to source out vendors on your own and make the process of where to buy Jamaican Blue coffee a walk in the part than a tedious task. When you do enjoy your sweet, clean and mild Jamaican Blue coffee, make sure to pass the knowledge on to other coffee enthusiasts who could benefit from it. After all, we can all do with some tips when it comes to learning about the vast world of our favorite beverage.

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