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The Koke washing station is named for the Koke Kebele town, where it is located in the Yirgacheffe district of the Gedeo Zone. We have had a long-standing relationship with the family-owned Koke washing station, surprisingly through our Brazilian connections. The mill was built in 2011 and has seen many improvements since 2015, when the washing station staff began providing guidance to contributing producers regarding steps to increase coffee quality. We have been providing feedback to Koke and sourcing with them for more than five years, and we look forward to many more years of fruitful partnership.
The Koke station stands on the side of a hill, with coffee grown above and below the station. This is not your average Gr. 1 Koke, for the last three years, the Koke station managers have been separating out the higher elevation cherries for our top lot chops, and the quality clearly shows. 96 small scale farmers provided cherries to Koke this harvest most of them multi-generational family farmers.
Coffee cherries delivered to the washing station are first separated by hand to remove the less dense cherries. Then the remaining cherry is taken to Koke’s 89 raised beds to dry in the sun, which takes about 21 days. Tarps are often used to keep the coffee from drying too quickly and losing its beautiful and characteristic cup profile. Natural processed coffee dried with cherry is then milled to remove the husks and stored in the dry mill warehouse. Beans are packaged in clearly marked 60kg bags for export.
Coffee is prepared for export at Tracon Trading’s coffee cleaning and storage plant on 30,000 sq meters of land in Addis Ababa. The plant is equipped with modern Pinhalense coffee processing machines and a Buhler Z+ color sorter. The machine has the capacity of processing six tons per hour. Beans pass through a final hand sort on conveyor belts. The plant’s six storage silos have a capacity of roughly 15,000 metric tons. The warehouses are clean, with ample lighting and ventilation, which are ideal for maintaining the quality of the coffee.
Elevation: 1800 m
Variety: Kurume, Dega, Wolisho
A very exotic and tasty Ethiopian Yirgacheffe.
Awesome cup this season. Tasty from light to dark. Super clean, peachy like floral acidity with red fruit tones balanced with stronger chocolate spice notes. Unlike the washed processed, this cup pulls much more of the traditional Yirg spice notes, which make a great compliment to the peachy and red fruit tones on the front end of this cup. Lighter roasts will be a bit higher acidity but where this cup shines. Medium roasts smooth out the cup a bit but rid the cup of the more peachy acidity. The red fruit notes still pop right through those spicier tones though no matter what roast level you go to. Dark roasts get very potent dark chocolate with some herbal spice, still some fruitiness as the cup cools but pretty dark toned once you hit second crack.
A cool cup from light to dark but erroring closer to 2nd crack than first was a good thing in our book. This cup is not all about ferment fruit, this cup is about complex tea like and floral spice which find a balance around a strong medium roast. Nice and clean for a natural, easy to roast.