Kanja is the name of the cooperative, also centered around a wet mill of the same name. It's a similar set up in most areas of Kenya - these cooperatives - or 'factories' - are centrally located washing stations where coop members deliver cherry to be pulped, fermented, washed, and then dried. This particular coop has been in operation since 1979 and now has over 2000 members. Kanja is located in Kagaari on the eastern slopes of Mount Kenya, just outside of Embu. Most of the farms sit on the mountain at right around 1800 meters. SL-28 is the dominant varietal here (check out the pic below of a nursery that is 100% SL-28), a hybrid strain of Bourbon from Scot Labs in the 1930's. And it's a peaberry too, meaning dense beans. These can take a bit of heat and will develop nicely on into the darker end of the roast spectrum.
The ground coffee shows notes of mango and jammy fruits like plum and raspberry. It's a fairly fruit-forward smell, and darker roasts pull out baking spices and a bit of dried papaya. The theme continues in the wet aroma, but it is a scent of buttery caramel that we're first greeted with off the crust, and fruited notes are most present when breaking through. It's a nice culmination of sweetness and fruitiness, and one that transfers to the cup. The first sip shows a note of elderberry tea, light caramel, and a bit of clove spice. City+ is where we had the best fruit flavors, with raspberry jam, lingonberry tartness, licorice root, and a bit of candied citrus peel in the back end. The acidity vascilates between citric and tannic, and has staying power on the palette, carrying with it a flavor of burned sugar in the long aftertaste. It's a fairly bodied Kenya too, and running a Full City roast through the espresso machine gave us a creamy, ultra sweet shot loaded with wild fruit and citric intensity. A particularly nice SO espresso Kenya.
|Processing||Wet Process (Washed)|
|Arrival date||June 2014 Arrival|
|Appearance||.2 d/300gr, 15+ PB Screen|
|Intensity/Prime attribute||Bold intensity / A complex cup, with layers of fruit, sweetness and aggressive rindy finish|
|Roast||City to Full City+. Cups great at lightest roast levels and develops a nice profile in the darker ranges too - PBs can handle it!|
|Recommended for Espresso||Yes|