A lovely, delicate Burundi cup. Fruited hints of apricot and dried papaya with complex baking spice notes woven through, like mace, clove, and anise. Syrupy sweetness from start to finish and mild floral character. City to City+.
|Region||Gakenke, Kayanza Province|
|Processing||Wet Process (Washed)|
|Drying Method||Raised Bed Sun-dried|
|Arrival date||December 2018 Arrival|
|Bag size||60 KG|
|Appearance||.5 d/300gr, 16-18 Screen|
|Roast Recommendations||City to City+|
Gakenke is a coffee station in Gatara Commune, Kayanza Province of Burundi. 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. Gakenke sits at 1675 meters above sea level, and many of the farmers have coffee planted much higher than this. Gakenke is named after a plant that grows wild in the area with thin, hollow stems that are commonly used to drink the locally made banana beer. Gakenke pulls clean water from the Rivubo river that runs alongside the station site. During the harvest season 1,900 local coffee farmers from 22 neighboring villages sell their coffee to Gakenke, where it is processed as fully washed and naturally in whole cherry.
This lot from Gakenke is a real show stopper, syrupy sweet and fruited with a mild floral character that adds a perfumed touch to the lighter roasts. The dry fragrance has a sweet clove smell, like clove gum or sweetened clove tea, and layers of raw sugar sweetness. The aroma hints at red raisin and more baking spices, and breaking through the crust releases a subtle floral fruited smell in the steam. Burundi's are often pretty complex coffees, and Gakenke definitely hits that mark. The cup is quite delicate when roasted light, and that's where my roast recommendation wound up. Staying north of Full City leads to a nice, lively cup, black tea-like acidity threading together top notes of apricot, dried papaya and baking spices such as clove, mace and anise. Top it all off with a floral stone fruit aroma, subtle, but makes a lasting impression. And what I like about Gakenke's sweetness is that it sort of rides the line between fruited and more raw sugar type sweet flavors. It's syrupy sweet, that's for sure, a feature that's enhanced by creamy mouthfeel.