Enticing floral notes of jasmine and cedar add to a sweet cup with flavours of whitecurrants and raspberries. A lovely soft mouthfeel carries a perfumed finish.
Producer Chelelectu Washing Station
Harvest January, 2016
Process Fully Washed & Dried on Raised Beds
Variety Ethiopian Heirloom
Region Kochere, Yirgacheffe
Altitude 1,900 metres
Arrival June, 2016
One of the most exciting tasting coffees we have had for a long time. From Workshop Coffee…. get it here.
This washed Yirgacheffe coffee delivers forest fruit and peach sweetness; medium bodied, with citrus acidity with hints of lemon peel and elderflower
The burka Silinga washing station receives coffee cherry from approximately five-hundred farmers in the area. The average farm size in this part of yirgacheffe is only two hectares, on which, in addition to coffee, maize and produce is also grown for the market and the family. The cherry is delivered to the washing station and processed using the traditional washed method (see ther’i) with a forty-eight hour fermentation time. The parchment-covered coffee is then sun-dried on over one hundred drying tables. A lagoon next to the washing station has been built to filtrate and clean the processing water. The washed method is water intensive and cleaning the water to enable re-use is paramount for all washing stations.
- Mill: Burka Silinga
- Location: Harenja (Yirgacheffe)
- Process: Washed
- Varietal: Wolisho, Kurme, Dega
- Altitude: 1850-1900masl
At the time of writing you could still buy this coffee from Bailies Coffee in Belfast here.
What we thought
It’s a Yirgacheffee. I’ve never had a Ethiopian Yirgacheffe from a good roaster that wasn’t great, memorable or interesting.
You expect fruitiness of some kind with the Yirgacheffe and, in this case the lemon peel and elderflower thing reminded me of the summer we didn’t really get in Northern Ireland this year. When I think of herbal tea I always say, mmm I’m not really a fan but if it’s light… not too over pronounced or bold… just light and refreshing, then I can get on board with that. This coffee reminded me of the very best herbal teas I have had. Fresh, enjoyable to drink but distinct enough to hold your attention and definitely not like a bad drink you endure to cure a flu.
We chemex most coffee nowadays, occasionally making a V60 or Aeropress but, sometimes a coffee is just so good that you don’t want to veer off the grind size and the brew that you nailed so well. In this case, we kept it chemex, all 250g of this beautiful tasting coffee.
As soon as I’d finished the bag I caught a nasty head cold/sinus thing and now I can’t taste or smell coffee…. how’s that!
Go get some while it lasts….
The Roaster says…
A pleasant aroma of nougat truffle with a hint of cinnamon turns into an incredibly sweet taste reminiscent of dark muscovado sugar with floral notes of magnolia blossom. After-taste of roasted hazelnuts in caramel.
A group of 14 families from the canton of Desamparados, south of San José, are producing coffee in a new processing centre, or beneficio, using sustainable procedures that have attracted them buyers from Japan, Taiwan, Switzerland, Australia and the United States.
The group created the Farmers Association of La Violeta de Desamparados (AGRIVID), and their processing involves environmentally friendly practices that allow them, for example, to use only 8 liters of water to process a 46-kilogram coffee sack. The group is growing various coffee varieties at 1,400-1,600 meters above sea level. “ours is not a large quantity operation, but very selective with lots of quality coffee, which allows us to place our coffee at very good prices both in domestic and international markets”AGRIVID member Gilbert Núñez said.
- Producer: AGRIVID
- Process: White Honey
- Altitude: 1600 – 1750 masl (metres above sea level).
- Botanical variety: Caturra, Catuai.
The Coffee Dump…
We open a bag of fresh coffee and inhale deeply… the aroma always sparks a reaction. We’ve said this before most likely.
And then we weigh, grind and smell again. Then this….
I think I hear the wooosh noise when we dump coffee into the filter just before the brew happens. Just the woosh, no voices… yet! And yes yes, we know some of you were thinking of something else when you saw the words “the coffee dump.”
Brown Sugar, how come you taste so good…
The aroma was amazing but this coffee was tasting even more amazing today. Spicy but sweet. Bold and fruity. Floral.
We’ve talked a lot about balance over the past couple of years and this coffee has that balance, the kind we love. A lovely after-taste rounds this off so so well and right down to when we had a mouthful of cold coffee left in the cup, it was still delicious and nutty.
Buy this coffee from Bailies Coffee in Belfast here.
Big Blackcurrants & Juicy Tomato
Kenya Mutheka Muthuaini AA 250g – Bailies Coffee Belfast – go get this coffee here.
The sauvignon blanc of coffees, this intense offering with pronounced Kenyan attributes of black currant is well rounded despite its high citrus acidity. It’s full bodied with a caramel after-taste
We absolutely loved this coffee. I can’t remember the last time we got through a 250g bag so quickly. You have to try it. Ordinarily we would have written a review post specifically for this coffee but we had several coffees that we loved over the past few weeks and had to write a go get this coffee post to cover them all.
Totally Tropical Taste
El Salvador Finca Argentina Los Mangos – Washed Bourbon – 3Fe – go get this coffee here. [Or maybe at Established in Belfast]
Milk chocolate, tropical fruit bringing sweetness and balance.
This coffee is so well rounded but that tropical fruitiness is just a beautiful thing to have in the cup. We still have another bag of this to get through and it’s simply delicious.
Oooh we haven’t even got this to try
Elida Estate Natural, Wilford Lamastus – Cat & Cloud – go get this coffee here. [while retail stock lasts]
Ok, so this is a bit cheeky to recommend a coffee we don’t even have in the kitchen. We may not even get a chance to pick up a bag of this before it vanishes from the shelves at Established. They have a couple of coffees on bar and retail from Cat & Cloud this week and this Natural sounds like it is a real beauty. Go get this coffee if you are in Belfast… but, hurry!
How d’ya like them Apples?
Herbazu Costa Rica – Square Mile – go get this coffee here
A distinct green apple flavour and acidity makes this a very vibrant coffee up front, and complimented with a fudge and raisin sweetness becomes a complete and deliciously balanced cup.
This is really lively. We love how clearly those green apples come through but the fudge, toffee sweetness added in makes this a really beautiful coffee.
If you’ve had any amazing coffees recently that you think we should know about, let us know via Twitter, Facebook or Instagram.
Origin: Sasaba Washing Station, Ethiopia
Varietal: Mixed Heirloom
Roaster: Bailies Coffee, Belfast.
The Roaster says…
Experience an intense aroma of dried berries and figs with pronounced hoppy notes, stone fruit acidity and a milk chocolate after-taste from this Ethiopian Coffee.
The red cherries are produced in the area surrounding the washing station and are collected from late September until December. Cherries are processed on-site and fermented for about 48-72 hours before they are placed on the drying beds for around 7-8 days. About 350-400 drying-beds are present at the washing station. The natural coffees are usually dried for 15-20 days. The average farmer selling to Sasaba own as few as 10 to 15 coffee trees.
How was it…
This coffee sat on our bench for a few days before we got around to opening the bag. By the time we opened it, we’d already seen a few comments around the web praising it’s qualities so, we were expectant.
It did not disappoint.
We would say it’s maybe one of the best coffees we have had so far this summer. We’ve not had much of a summer here in Northern Ireland when it comes to favourable weather and, if honest we have had a few lacklustre weeks with our coffee too. Nothing was dancing, nothing was exciting our taste buds.
You can usually trust an Ethiopian coffee to provide a bit of excitement.
The Ethiopia Sasaba Natural did just that.
The berries delivered that expected fruity-ness that Ethiopian coffees are often known for but, the hoppy notes really grabbed us.
We’ve been enjoying some beautiful hoppy beers of late via Beerbods – if you like Beer, check them out – and this coffee was like a little glimpse of some of the finest hoppy beer we’ve tasted. A hint of bitterness that lingers… but not for too long!
The milky cocoa hit that followed was superb too but that fruity hoppy burst of flavour is what really made this coffee memorable for us. It was great cupped, in the V60 and in the Chemex, dancing with flavour every time and we also found this one really easy to dial in on the grinder, no fuss… just a super coffee!
You have to go get some, trust us!
At the time of writing you could still buy the Ethiopia Sasaba Natural from Bailies Coffee Belfast here. You can also sign up to receive a monthly single origin coffee from Bailies here.
Thanks folks, we really loved this coffee.
Coffee: Las Lajas
Origin: Finca Las Lajas Estates, Costa Rica
Varietal: Caturra and Catuai
Roaster: Bewleys Coffee, Dublin.
The Roaster says…
The Bewleys Coffee project has already enjoyed a coffee from this wonderful farm back in January, the Las Lajas – black honey process. The Las Lajas farm boasts 7 different processes, each giving a unique flavour, complexity and clarity to the coffee.
The normal process of leaving 100% of the mucilage on all ‘levels” of honey is typical at Las Lajas. However, during our visit of early 2015 we were impressed with Oscar and Fracisca’s first trials of the semi-washed honey with only 25% of the mucilage still on the parchment. This gave clarity of flavour more associated with a washed coffee, but still with tremendous sweetness.
The phrase ‘Pura-Vida’ is a common greeting in Costa Rica and only really understood when you have experienced the ‘pure life’ of the climate. people and the environment. Although a smaller coffee producer than in the past, the industry has morphed into a hotbed of innovation and drive for quality.
Costa Rica Las Lajas is an organic micro mill located in Sabanilla de Alajuela in the Central Valley region of Costa rica. Las Lajas is known for being one of the first to process high-quality Honeys and Naturals in Central America – a direct influence of many of the stunning and non-typically processed coffees coming from that region.
Caramel sweetness that develops to tropical fruit and subtle cherry flavours with a soft balancing acidity.
How was it…
If you can imagine a cherry flavoured tea. Is there such a thing? By the time we had tasted this coffee brewed a few different ways, we had noticed the cherry notes almost every time and, always as it had cooled down nicely.
Fruity cherries but, delicate…
Before we arrived at the cherries though, we found the caramel sweetness to be elusive. Things were a little buttery but, also a bit leather-like which was odd. Maybe we were stuck in the half-way house of flavour between caramel sweetness and tropical fruit.
Does caramel sweetness morph into buttery leather before it becomes tropical fruit… erm? Probably not.
And then as it cooled, those sneaky subtle cherries fell onto our palette like the first few drops of welcome cool rain on a murky hot day.
Really though, the change in this coffee was so dramatic that it required the above turn of phrase.
We don’t always need to love every aspect of every coffee and, sometimes the changes in temperature and/or brew method provide us with all kinds of surprises. Same as it ever was eh?
Remember you can sign up to the Bewleys Coffee Project subscription service here to receive a different coffee each month, straight to your door and always interesting… get signed up!
[Our Black Honey processed Las Lajas Costa Rica Bewleys Coffee Dublin post as mentioned above, is here]