THIS COFFEE HAS SOLD OUT. Tart and dark fruit notes are showcased in brews of Mahiga AB, floral blueberry, blood orange, grape juice, and red punch. Delicious fruited sweetness and heady aroma. City to Full City.
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The Mahiga Factory washing station sits at 1800 meters in the Othaya constituency of Nyeri County: With just over 500 farmer members, Mahiga collects and processes the whole coffee cherry for farmer members using a disc depulping machine before fermenting the coffee in order to remove the sticky demucilage layer. After the fruit is easily removed, the seeds are then soaked in clean water where they are completely "washed" of any remaining fruit residue, and then dried on raised beds. Farmers in the region grow mainly SL-28 and SL-34, with small amounts of Ruiru mixed in. Mahiga is one of several coffees we picked up from Othaya Farmer's Cooperative Society (FCS), an FCS that includes an impressive amount of wet mills, 18 in all, and their work in the region dates back to the late 1950s. Coffee is processed and kept separate by day or even weekly deliveries at the factory in order to identify quality. The separated batches are then run through screens in order to separate beans by size, the most common being AA (17-19 screen), AB (15-17 screen), and Peaberry, which are refered to as "outturns".
Mahiga shows both tart and dark fruit undertones depending on roast development, and fruited sweetness fills out the cup flavor base when brewed. City roasts smell orange-like, a sort of pithy smell of orange peel comes through, along with sweet dried berry smells. The wet aroma has the warmth and sweetness of blackberry jam cooking on the stove, especially strong at City+ roast level. Breaking through the crust puffed a slight floral fruit note too in the steam, not so recognizable, but adding a retronasal affect to the olfactory experience. The floral element shines in the cup as a blueberry note, a perfumed accent that comes from a blueberry picked straight from the shrub at peak ripeness. Other dark fruit notes that we noted when tasting a City+ roast are grape and blackberry juices, blood orange, and red punch. "Juicy" is an accurate description for Mahiga, a title that's retained at both ends of the roast spectrum (at least with our roasts, which did not go darker than Full City). And at the outer edge of roast development a dark grape and chocolate flavor develops, and a chocolate-covered dry blueberry note fills the finish.