THIS COFFEE HAS SOLD OUT. Cane juice sweetness, with notes of dried cherry, orange tea, graham cracker, and a tart lemon accent. Floral and raspberry leaf hints mark the finish. Big body in the darker roast levels. City to Full City+. Great for espresso.
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This coffee is from a private washing station located in the Mutambu area of Bujumbura Province. The station is a collection site for more than 3,000 farmers in the hillsides, small-holder farms, many are much less than 1 hectare of cultivated land adjacent to their homes (that first shot is of some of the farmer's children playing by the washing channel). Coffee cherry is hand-picked, then delivered to the station where it is fully washed, fermented, and then dried on raised beds. Hand sorting is a major factor of quality control, starting with the freshly picked cherry, and ending at the dry mill. Growing altitudes range from about 1400 to 1900 meters at the highest peaks. Like most of the region, Bourbon is the dominant varietal grown. You can pull quite a bit of sweetness out of these little beans, and we found this coffee to be very responsive to heat adjustments, our roasts never getting away from us. The color tone is uniform too, even in light roasting, making this a fairly easy coffee to roast in so far as judging roast level by color shade. If darker roasting is your preference and you are able to adjust heat settings, try dropping the heat at first crack just enough to slow roast development without stopping it altogether. Stretching the roast can help to tone down any ashy flavors that may come from too much heat during 1st cracks, and increasing sugar caramelization in the process.
This Burundi has an invigorating smell of spiced brown sugar with subtle dried fruit hints, and reminds me of raisin muffin. The sweetness in the dry fragrance is powerful to say the least. The wetted crust shows a striking resemblance to creme brûlée crust, a dessert of burned sugar and custard, along with vanilla caramel notes building in the steam. The cup flavor at City roast sees a tart lemon note hanging overhead, not puckering, but brisk and lasting. Grounding cane juice sweetness is amplified as the coffee cools, followed by notes of dried cherry and orange tea, which are pleasant on the tongue. City+ roasts have a nice developed graham cracker sweetness (honeyed), subtle notes of fresh floral and raspberry leaf marking the finish. This is an articulate coffee, with a palette cleansing finish like that of black tea. A nice level of complexity is found in this Burundi in the City to Full City roast range, the latter making for a syrupy sweet shot of espresso, highlighted by a marion berry note, and a hefty chocolate base.