You may have noticed that we have quite a few coffees from Ethiopia. Why so many? Widely considered the birthplace of coffee, with just about 2,000 years of cultivation, Ethiopia is swimming in indigenous varietals. And much like wine, the taste of coffee is influenced by multiple variables along the process from farm to cup. With the benefit of so much variation, Ethiopia is a powerhouse in producing some of the most dynamic, engaging coffees the world has ever seen. They've managed to embrace modern coffee innovations and practices while remaining true to their long coffee heritage.
One version of coffee's discovery begins with a vigilant goat herder. He noticed his goats favored the fruit from a certain bush. They seemed energized, dancing about. Intrigued, he collected some of the fruit for himself and brought them to a holy man. This holy man declared they must be evil and tossed them in the fire. But when the aroma of the roasted beans wafted past the monks, they knew the beans were worth a second look. And so, coffee became known to humans.
First, we'll take a look at our newest Ethiopian coffee. This is Vincent's Roaster's Choice for November, Ethiopia Sidamo Shantawene Natural. Daye Bensa can be found in the hills of Sidamo. According to our coffee broker, they have been farming and exporting coffee since 2006. They are UTZ, Rainforest Alliance, and C.A.F.E. certified. Like many other coffee-farming communities around the world, Daye Bensa not only processes and exports their own coffee, but that of smaller coffee farmers in neighboring areas as well. They provide 15 washing stations across three districts. At the end of the growing season, they host a community celebration, recognizing the top farmers for delivering high-quality coffee cherries with cash prizes. Daye Bensa has plans to work with Hawassa University to help students perform research geared at improving coffee quality.
Coming in at 7th place from more than 1,400 entires in the 2020 Cup of Excellence in Ethiopia, we are so jazzed about having this available.
- Grown between 1900-2300 meters above sea level, it's a natural process coffee dried in the shade on raised beds
- Notes of tropical fruit with an apricot aroma
- Juicy acidity
Next, is another recent addition,
Ethiopia Guji Shakiso Gatame LTD. From the southern hills of Ethiopia, this coffee was very highly ranked with our coffee broker.
- Grown at 1600-1900 masl, this indigenous heirloom is a natural processed coffee, dried on raised beds.
- It's organically grown and sourced from just three farmers who own a total of 31 hectares between them.
- We tasted graham cracker notes, tea-like tannins, and a limited acidity, making this one of our most dynamic offerings.
- Grown between 4950 and 6950 feet in elevation, and is traditionally dried on raised beds.
- This process imparts a sweet, blueberry accent to the coffee that is 100% natural.
- For more information about the Oromia Co-op and the services they provide to the farmers, click : here.
They had this to say:
"(...)Evolving cup profiles from this area have converted sworn Yirgacheffe lovers by combining the seductive aromatics of Gedeo zone with candy-like cup structures, tangy lactic acidity, and, in the case of the best sun-dried coffees, mouthwatering tropical fruit. This particular lot from the Gatame Muka farmers shows a range of syrupy textures and fruit flavors."
Well, with a description like that, what coffee drinker wouldn't be intrigued?
Next, we have Ethiopia Mocca Harrar, a long time in-house fave. Nope, it doesn't taste like chocolate. Actually, there is a distinct blueberry note that's incredible. The "Mocca" references the Yemen port of Mocca, which is geographically really close to where this coffee is sourced.
Lastly, we have one of our all-time best sellers, Ethiopia Yirgacheffe.
High grown in the shade, this fully washed coffee from one of Ethiopia's most famous regions is easily one of our most popular coffees to date. It has nice, clean taste with bright, floral, and citrus notes.