From: 12.50 €
Country / Ethiopia
Region / Yirgacheffe
Producer / Birhanu Tesema
Process / Natural dried on raised beds for 24 days
Variety / JARC 74110 & 74112 and Kurume
Altitude / 1980 m
Blackberry and Grape Confectionary
Just north of the Wegida village center, Birhanu and his family run a 5.2 Hectare farm where they dry their own natural process coffee. At a little more than double the size of the average coffee farm in the area, the entire production of his family’s farm produced one lot of 105 bags Grade 1 green coffee. This farm was passed down to Birhanu over generations.
Birhanu Tesema uses his experience and traditional knowledge to select superior trees with high yield, high quality, disease resistant and drought tolerant characteristics. Whilst primarily replanting the JARC varieties and Kurume, Birhanu’s farm is also contains some heirloom varieties such as Dega. These varieties are maintained and exchanged among coffee farmers in the same area and is a classic example of the Terroir of Yirgacheffe and the Gedeo zone. Birhanu’s farm is best described as a Garden coffee production system, with well-maintained agro forestry practice and a mixed farming system. Throughout his farm the coffee trees grow under a very light shade from perennial shade trees and Enset (false banana), with root crops amongst the plantation. Taro and Enset are the main stable foods for the families in the area. Organic compost is the only source of nutrient that is used to fertilize both coffee trees and the other food crops on his farm. His inherited traditional coffee management skills are accompanied by the modern day specialty approach taught by Getu Bekele of G Broad and the Jambanto Group. Due to the well-maintained agroforestry system and soil/water conservation practice, the level of soil erosion on the farm has been low. This results with the top soil being rich with organic matter. Immediately after the end of the harvesting period, Birhanu gets focused on coffee tree and shade tree management. The main practices are pruning, land preparation, compost preparation, fertilization, planting/sowing, weed control and disease/pest management.
Birhanu Tesema delivers hand-picked coffee cherries directly to his respective natural coffee processing site in Wegida village. Both sinking the cherry into water and manual hand sorting is used to sort out under ripe, overripe and insect damaged cherries. Only well-ripen red cherries remain on the raised drying beds. This year, drying took 24 days, a little longer than normal do to more humid weather in the region. The coffee is covered overnight and in case of rain to avoid re-humidification.
The coffee is also covered when the weather is too hot, to ensure a smooth consistent drying of the cherry. A total of 11 Kg of red cherry per square meter is distributed on a drying bed made of a bamboo mat. To maintain uniform drying among beans, the coffee cherry is turned around on the bed manually six times per day. From the 15th day of drying, the trend of the moisture loss is monitored daily to ensure that the coffee is taken off the drying beds and the perfect moisture level, between 9.5% and 10.5%. This natural coffee processing technique plus the complex interactions among soil, rainfall distribution, temperature, shade and genetic make of the coffee varieties all play a role in the unique flavor profile of the coffee.
beans, ground for espresso, ground for moka pot
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