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Burundi Kayanza Gahahe Station

Baking spice flavors peak in lighter roasts and 'pop' against a cooked sugar backdrop. Darjeeling tea, clove, all spice, cinnamon, lemon rind and cider-like apple notes. City to Full City. Good for espresso.


Out of stock
  • Process Method Wet Process
  • Cultivar Bourbon Types
  • Farm Gate Yes
Region Kayanza Province
Processing Wet Process (Washed)
Drying Method Raised Bed Sun-dried
Arrival date January 2019 Arrival
Lot size 50
Bag size 60 KG
Packaging GrainPro liner
Farm Gate Yes
Cultivar Detail Bourbon
Grade A1
Appearance .4 d/300gr, 16-18 Screen
Roast Recommendations City to Full City
Type Farm Gate
Recommended for Espresso Yes

Gahahe Station is a coffee cherry collection site located in Kayanza, Burundi's northern province that borders neighboring Rwanda. Farmers grow mostly older bourbon types, the original coffee cultivar introduced to the area in the 1930s by Catholic monks traveling from the island of Reunion. Gahehe sits at just over 1800 meters above sea level and is a collection site for roughly 600 local farmers who are also coop members. As members, they are organized into small groups who receive training in best agricultural practices, seedlings to continue to help increase coffee production, and benefit from access to the global specialty coffee market. Gahahe was built in the mid 1980s, a time when the World Bank was investing heavily in Burundi's coffee sector, building out washing stations like this one to serve the surrounding coffee communities, outfitted with a eco-pulping Penagos for processing coffee cherry. More recently they've come under the direction of a Burundi coffee investment group who are able to offer this coffee, as well as a few others we've purchased (Yandaro, and Kibingo to name a couple), agronomical assistance to station members, regular maintenance of washing station equipment and drying beds, and management teams who follow the coffee deliveries from cherry selection, to keeping lots separated by quality tiers. Since partnering with this group, several of the stations have seen top placement in Burundi coffee competitions, including Gahahe placing 4th in the 2015 Burundi CoE, and 7th the year prior. We have a honey process lot from Gahahe right now as well, a unique opportunity to taste the same coffee processed two different ways side by side.

The ground coffee smells complex, loose leaf teas, raw sugars, fruit and baking spice accent notes. The wet aroma shows a scent of warmed caramel, saturated sweetness that gives way to spiced tea accents when breaking through the crust. The cup is fantastic when roasted light and dark, but my favorite brews were at the City/City+ end of the roast spectrum. When roasted light, spiced flavors peak and the cup finish is near pristine. The underlying sweetness comes off like cooked sugars at City+, a caramelized sugar flavor that is pungent like burned sugar/creme brûlée crust. Complex top notes flourish as the coffee cools, Darjeeling tea, clove, all spice, lemon rind and cider-like apple flavor. The citrus note gives off an acidic impression that rings out in the cup and helps construct delicate cup character. Cooked sugar sweetness is persistent in the aftertaste, as are baking spices which are the last flavors to note when the aftertaste has all but disappeared. I was surprised at the level of chocolate in Full City roasts, pointed bittersweetness that dominates the cup profile and sees a dark raisin hint peek through as it cools. What a fantastic cup this coffee from Gahahe Station makes, and doubles as chocolate-centered espresso too.