THIS COFFEE HAS SOLD OUT. Fruit and nut flavors highlight the cup, honey-sweet aroma, and citrus zest accents. Mouthfeel is velvety, helping define caramel sugar and pear-to-berry notes. City+ to Full City+. Great Ethiopia espresso (milder acid than most).
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What drew me to Kecho Tirtira is the location: While some of the stations in the Limu Inara area are relatively moderate in altitude, Kecho Tirtira Coop serves as a catchment for the highlands that surround it. Coffee farmers are in the 1900-2000 meter band, while the Kecho station is situated at around 1850 meters itself. It's not difficult to get to Kecho Tirtira, as it is a few hours from Jimma town, and just 30 kilometers or so from the regional capital of Limu Genet (where I was duped into buying fake honey, but that's another story!) Before organizing into a cooperative in 2010, coffee farmers were receiving very low local prices for their coffee cherry. The coop has much to improve upon, but I saw significant advances in the way they were wet-processing and drying the coffee on my last visit.
Kecho Tirtira is a nice, straightforward drinking coffee. It's a nice alternative to the more acidic coffees of the South, and works great in espresso, straight or as a blend ingredient! The dry ground coffee has the scent of lightly caramelized sugar, almond marzipan notes and at darker roast levels, toasted marshmallow. There is a toffee-praline scent when we add the hot water in cupping, a very sweet red honey aroma, and slight citrusy accents with a bit of rind. The cup is all about nut and fruit in the lighter roast levels (City to City+), with a nice velvety mouthfeel. It really comes into its own at Full City, where caramelized sugars accent modest pear and red berry fruited notes. An almond-hazelnut finish is found throughout the roast range. It's definitely a coffee that can take more roast, and this makes it ideal for espresso roasted to suit lighter or darker taste preferences.