In 1991 Billy and Akaisha Kaderli retired at the age
of 38. Now, into their 4th decade of this
financially independent lifestyle, they invite you
to take advantage of their wisdom and experience.
Billy and Akaisha Kaderli
Surprisingly, there were
not as many coffee houses in
Boquete as we
expected. Being in the center of coffee country, we figured there would be
coffee houses galore, with jazz music playing, people watching, pastries, WiFi,
maybe combined with
a juice bar
and/or wine bar along with tapas, cheese plates, salads and more.
Most decent cups of coffee
were sold in restaurants along with their breakfast, lunch or dinner menu. You
can get a fine cup of brew in Boquete, as Panama is known world-wide for their
coffee; it's just that we had a different picture in our minds.
One can take a coffee tour, go up to Finca
Lerida for a good cup or have a tasty java with breakfast and a pastry at
Sugar and Spice. It's all good.
Our morning routine seemed
to include a walk to Kotowa Coffee House, a place where Gringos like to hang
out. And Kotowa was only a 5 minute walk from
Kotowa Coffee bags
We brought preconceived
ideas about coffee with us when we traveled to Panama but were met with a
different reality. I mean, that's why we travel, right? To see new
combinations, new presentations, new everything.
So Kotowa became part of
our morning routine.
located at Plaza
Just off the main road is a
small plaza where a travel agency, Habla Ya Spanish School, a bank and other
miscellaneous business are located, and that's where you will find Kotowa
Coffee. Inside the shop are pastries, coffee by the pound and the world famous
Gesha coffee by the ounce and by the brewed cup.
There was no music playing,
but we were able to hook up to WiFi to watch the financial markets over a
morning cup of Joe.
Freshly ground and
brewed coffee to order
These brightly colored
coffee bags and thermoses house the famed Gesha coffee which sells for up to $10
an ounce. You can purchase bags with 2.5 ounce portions in four different
varietals. The thermoses offer you a free taste to see if you would like to
purchase a brewed cup or a bag of beans to take home.
Eight ounce cups of Gesha
ran from $2 - $4 and 12 ounce cups ran from $3 - $5+.
We tried several styles,
and each seemed remarkably different from the others. We have gotten used to
coffee with its robust flavor and full body, so the thin, almost-like-tea
Gesha didn't ring our bell.
But we are not experts and
I imagine the Gesha growers know what they are doing!
Being able to sample the
steaming coffee before purchase was a great idea and a good promotion.
Here you have listed all
sorts of delicious coffee combinations along with Chai tea, smoothies, cups of
steamed milk and hot chocolate. The Gesha cup of coffee is not listed here. All
prices are in USDollars.
The sign advertises coffee
"from the mountain to your cup."
We appreciated sitting
outside and watching the clouds come in and over the surrounding mountains.
People were coming and going from the Spanish school and the bank, and groups of
tourists and Expat locals came by here regularly to have their morning cup and
catch up with the news of the day.
Kotowa at the CEFATA
Center, top of the hill
Kotowa has another coffee
shop where you must go at least once to enjoy the view of Boquete from a higher
altitude. The CEFATA center is a volunteer organization and is located next door
to Kotowa. La Virgencita is the small yellow building and stone shrine just
outside the photo on the left.
From town, it's about a
$0.60 taxi ride per person. Definitely worth it to see the view. Just tell the
taxi driver you want to go to CEFATA for coffee at Kotowa and they will take you
there, about 5 minutes by taxi out of town. To come back into town, just go onto
the road and grab another taxi headed in that direction.
Voila! The view
You have a 180 degree view
of Boquete and the surrounding areas from up here. You can see how the town just
nestles into the divide between the mountains and the river running through it.
Enjoy your Panama coffee
Café Kotowa, Chiriqui Boquete, Avenida
Central, Plaza Los Establos
Also located up the hill at
CEFATA Center on the way into town
stories and photos of Panama, click
About the Authors
Early Lifestyle appeals to a different
kind of person – the person who prizes their
independence, values their time, and who doesn’t
want to mindlessly follow the crowd.