KAMWANGI - Kenya
Indigenous Heirloom varieties
January - March 2020
Sweet chocolate, Raspberries, Tangy acidity, Jaffa cakes
Kercha district is located in Guji zone in the Oromia region of Ethiopia. Over a number of years the region has developed a distinguished reputation for fine coffees, producing some of the most sought-after microlots in the world.
The combination of high altitude (up to 2,200m in some areas), fertile soil, consistent and plentiful rains, and an abundance of local knowledge are all contributing factors to the high status of Yirgacheffe coffees. The indigenous ‘heirloom’ varietals - which grow wild in Ethiopia - are responsible for the unique flavour notes which make for an unusual but beautifully refined cup, characterised by strong citric acidity, sweet chocolate and floral/herbal notes of lavender, jasmine, bergamot and thyme.
Shade grown, ripe cherries are delivered to the mill for careful sorting, to select only the ripest.
The cherries are dried in the sun on raised African beds for approximately 12 - 15 days. In the daytime they are raked and turned periodically to ensure a consistent drying process; covered between 12pm and 3pm to protect them from sun damage and at night time to protect it from rainall and moisture. Once the coffee has dried to the right level it is milled, graded, sorted and thoroughly handpicked, before being bagged in GrainPro for export from the port of Djibouti
The natural, or dry process, is the traditional process, going back generations. When accomplished in a controlled and careful manner, dry processed coffees can produce flavour experiences not found in wet processed coffees, deep fruits and florals, normally with heavier mouthfeel and lower acidity. The cherries are first sorted, and then laid out on in thin layers (2-6 cm) on raised drying beds. These are almost always used for high quality naturals, as they aid airflow around the coffee as it dries, enabling more even drying. It is very important that coffees are sorted very carefully early on in the drying process, as all of the cherries quickly turn dark brown, making it impossible to separate under and overripe cherries. The cherries are turned frequently to avoid mold formation or over-fermentation, until they reach a moisture content of below 20%, and the outer cherry layer shrinks and blackens. This process takes between 2 and 4 weeks, depending on weather conditions.