Coffee subscription 17th March to 13th April
Our coffee of the month funning from the 17th of March to the 13th of April (a four week cycle) is the amazing directly sourced Rwanda Bwishaza thick natural. We've been working directly with the co-operative for several years and they produce natural processed coffees secifically for us. We are very fortunate to be able to work so directly with producers and it's fantastic to be able to offer this coffee to our coffee of the month subscribers.
We first visited Rwanda in 2014 and over the last few years we've developed some very close relationships within the Rwandan coffee community. We first visited Bwishaza co-operative in 2015 and have been buying coffee from them every year.
Bwishaza co-operative is located north of Kibuye close to lake Kivu. You can view the exact location via the link to google maps. The co-operative traditionally focused on producing speciality washed coffees in lot sizes of 50 x 60kg bags. We still buy these larger lots as the cups scores are often very good and their best lots score around the 86 mark. In 2015 we asked the board members if they would be interested in producing some smaller experimental lots to include naturals and washed lots.
The co-operative produces two natural process microlots specifically for us using a technique that we first proposed three years ago. This is a 'thick layer' natural that is produced using a technique that slows down the drying process to induce more fruit notes and a hint of natural fermentation.
Coffee is hand harvested by small hold farmer members and then sorted carefully to remove defects before it is laid to try on raised tables. These raised tables ensure even drying of the coffee to avoid mold growth. The layer of coffee is usually no more than 1 inch thick and is moved regularly to make sure that the coffee dries evenly but a bit slower than the thin layer natural.
We are very happy with the results this year and this coffee is well rounded and juicy with a thick, syrupy body. We get notes of prune, raisin, grape and molasses.
Varietal – Red Bourbon
Preparation – Natural, Thick Layer
Location – North of Kibuye, Rwanda
Altitude – 1500 masl