Congratulations to all the winning roasters of the recent Good Food Awards, many of whom are long time acquaintances and friends, as are many of those people judging the GFA. No matter what the coffee or competition is, the roasting and the judging involved is highly nuanced and requires skill and attentiveness, and those people should be recognized and respected.
That said, there is a question that pops up among many of my coffee peers each year: Why is it, year after year, the Good Food Awards is almost always dominated by Ethiopian coffees? Does Ethiopia simply deliver the best tasting coffees in the world? Or, could it be an unintentional habitual response — a social trend — that specialty coffee consumers have become focused on because it is such an easy, recognizable set of flavor attributes that are mostly pleasant to those who seek exciting differences? I love Ethiopia coffees, but it is a big world out there, and when one out of dozens of producing countries annually dominates the list of winners, something seems amiss.