Variety: Red Bourbon & Assorted Field Varieties
Region: Kayanza, Burundi
Elevation: 1,900 - 2,100 meters
Process: Fully Washed
Harvest: July 2023
Notes: Moon grape, black cherry, clean, , persimmon, baking spice with sweet & bright acidity.
Every year I am stoked on the chance to get some seriously stellar lots from our friends over at Long Miles Coffee Project. This year, Gitwe really came through with very distinct Burundian qualities. On the cupping table, this lot spoke firmly of the citric and dark cherry sensibilites. A sparkling brew with a firm structure framed by a bright acidity.
Gitwe is an area in the northern areas of Kayanza. This lot was comprised from 600 farmers working together at the farm level and at the Heza washing station to make this the clean, consistent and distinguished lot that it is. At almost every hour the hill bustles with the activity of village life. People run alongside cars with baskets full to the brim with onions and potatoes to sell. Carpenters craft planks of wood into tables in the small town’s center. Fig trees stand tall on either side of the hill, casting a welcoming shade from the hot East African sun. An assortment of onions, sweet potato, maize, banana, cassava, beans and cabbage are grown alongside coffee in the hill’s rich soils. The Long Miles Coffee Farm can be found on one of Gitwe’s slopes, just above Heza Washing Station. All around the washing station, 7,055 coffee trees are growing in small home plots.
Heza Washing Station processes their coffee by pumping spring water from a nearby natural spring. During the fully washed process, freshly harvested cherries are delivered by coffee farmers to the washing station, then floated and hand-sorted for ripeness upon arrival. The cherries are pulped and undergo a double fermentation process. Parchment spends around twelve hours dry fermenting, then undergoes a twenty-four hour wet fermentation. The parchment is sometimes ‘footed’ after fermentation. A team will agitate and dance on the slippery coffee parchment by foot, helping to loosen any remaining mucilage clinging to it. It is then rinsed in fresh water, graded by density and left to soak for another four to six hours in the final rinse tank. The parchment is carried to covered drying tables where it spends between six to forty-eight hours pre-drying. During this time, it is hand-picked for under-ripeness, over-ripeness, insect damage and visual defects. It is then moved to traditional African raised tables where it spends between sixteen to twenty days slow drying (depending on the weather) until it reaches the ideal 10.5% moisture level.
Hope you enjoy this one as much as I do!
Next Roast is Scheduled for Monday, March 4th.