ESPRESSO ~ Juicebox Series ~ Gathugu AA from Nyeri, Kenya
Producers: smallholders organized around the Gathugu washing station
Place: Nyeri, Kenya
Varieties: SL28 & Ruiru 11
Harvest: Dec-Jan 2022/23
Tasting notes: plum pudding, juicy and resinous
A field blend of SL28 & Ruiru11 varieties. Picked by smallholders and delivered to Gathugu washing station in Konyu & Mathira East town to be processed. Fermented in the traditional Double Washed method and dried on raised beds. Roasted for espresso. Juicy and resinous.
This lot from Gathugu makes shots that are exceptionally juicy and sweet with a surprising amount of balance to perform well with milk. This is the espresso you want to be pulling over the holidays.
Starting spec: 18g./45g. in 28sec. @9bar 93C
Established in 1985, Gathugu FCS plays a critical role in supporting and advancing coffee production with around 500 active members.
As a coop, there’s vested interest in maintaining and progressing as a group, growing and producing exceptional coffees.
The collective facilitates access to necessary agricultural inputs (fertilizers, seeds and equipment), helping its members optimize their farming practices and improve their yields.
Farmers delivering to Gathugu cultivate primarily SL28 and Ruiru-11 in small coffee gardens that are, on average, smaller than 1 hectare.
Only the ripest cherries are delivered, and additional hand sorting and floating is done to remove less dense and damaged fruit before the coffee is depulped, fermented, and washed.
After the coffee is washed, it’s soaked in fresh water for long periods – This process is often called Double Washed or Kenya process, and contributes to the quality through equalizing the seeds moisture before going to the drying tables.
The lot is dried for up to two weeks on raised beds, which are carefully constructed to ensure proper air circulation and temperature control for optimal drying. When the coffee is milled for export, the green beans are sorted by screen size and graded according to size and shape. Larger beans (17/18 screen) are labelled AA (like this one from Gathugu), 15/16 screen are labelled AB, and the round peaberry are labelled PB, there are also other grades that you don’t often see exported.
We brew all our coffees with municipal water that flows from our taps in Metro Vancouver. This municipal source is very soft, low ppm water (around 30 TDS)
There are many alternative water recipes out there that will produce tasty cups if your water from the tap isn’t giving you good results. A good place to start is 1/2 strength Third Wave Water of around 60-70ppm (0.16g.-0.2g./L of TWW powder).