One of the best things about winter in our hemisphere is that all the Ethiopian coffees are in full force to remind you of the joys of summer. The Bombe mountains (whence this coffee comes) are an incredibly lush landscape that we hope to revisit ourselves when certain global issues sort themselves out a bit more... It's more than a bit ironic that as Ethiopia itself has struggled with political unrest the coffees from the country have been better than ever. We've had insane luck recently sourcing Ethiopian coffees with our friends at Falcon Coffee and their local partners at Daye Bensa, and this one is no different. We think it tastes like all sorts of sour fruity candies, marshmallows, and purple basil. This may sound like an odd combo, but trust us, the overwhelming sweetness of this coffee ties it all together into an unbelievable package.
The producers of Keramo, who live high in the beautiful Bombe mountains, are mainly outgrowers that work with Daye Bensa. The outgrower group consists of about 1500 growers in various parts of the mountain range, which also include producers from Bombe and Shantawene. The producers deliver their coffee to Daye Bensa Keramo washing station. Keramo cherries are processed at Keramo Washing Station. On the Shantawene site, Daye Bensa processed the #7 Cup of Excellence lot, and is investing in upgraded processing equipment, and experimenting with honey and anaerobic fermentation. The beans are very dense coffee, with heavy concentrations of the smaller screen sizes (the majority of the coffee screen sizes at 13-14) which is highly unusual and reflects the higher elevations where the coffee is grown.
At Daye Bensa traceability is extremely important for their micro-lots. The record-keeping book is carefully handled and separation is key to guarantee the highest level of quality. When the cherries are received they got separated by village, the coffee is then kept separate throughout drying, processing, and storage, with labels stating the delivery dates, farm name, lot number, and more details related to the particular lot. Daye Bensa is a particularly "Community" oriented business delivering additional bonus payments to the farmers based on the volume they contribute to the Micro-lots and they reward consistency year in year out. This year they are also rewarding their workers at the farm for the crucial role they have during the drying process. In addition, they are constantly working with the school principal in the villages surrounding the farm providing school materials for the students that struggle with basic needs such as note pads or pens