Another great Nyeri coffee. Blackcurrant, Rhubarb and Cranberry. Well balanced sweetness with dark chocolate finish.
Gatuyaini wetmill is part of Othaya Farmers’ Cooperative Society Limited, one of a few washing stations or “factories” that form the coop group based in the heartland of Kukuyu territory, Nyeri. At 1,981m above sea level it is the highest grown and processed coffee in the society & amongst the highest in the whole region. The mill processes coffee cherries sourced from almost 800 farmers. The total farmed area is 69.1 acres with individual trees yielding between 5 & 10kg of cherries per season.
Nyeri County has cool temperatures and fertile central highlands, lying between the Eastern base of the Aberdare (Nyandarua) Range, which forms part of the Eastern end of the Great Rift Valley, and the Western slopes of Mt. Kenya. Nyeri town (county headquarters) acts as a destination for those visiting Aberdare National Park and Mt. Kenya.
The combination of fertile soil, seasonal rainfall and high altitude provide the ideal climate for coffees characterised by high acidity, full body and ripe fruit flavours. Most coffees from Nyeri develop and mature slowly producing extra hard beans. This quality is also evident in the cup.
The coffee is wet processed, where the fully ripe cherries are:
• Fermented for 12 - 48 hours (depending on climatic conditions)
• Dried slowly over 2 - 3 weeks on raised African beds until the moisture content is
reduced to 10-12%.
The coffee is then processed at Othaya dry mill (on the same site) where it is rested in parchment for 3 weeks before being hulled, cleaned and graded by bean size. Finally, the coffee is carefully handpicked before being bagged in GrainPro for export from Mombasa.
SL28 and SL-324 were created in the 1930s by Scott Laboratories as botanists searched for different mutations of Bourbon and Typica. They have copper coloured leaves and their beans are broad. They are native to Kenya and are relatively low yielding, however the cup qualities are highly sought after. Characteristics can include intense lemon acidity, great sweetness, balance and complexity.
A more modern variety and a direct result of hybridization is Ruiru 11, which is a combination of Timor Hybrid variety (an interspecific hybrid of Arabica and Robusta) and Rume Sudan, a cultivar that is resistant to coffee-berry disease, which is a common plight in the country. Ruiru 11 has been available for sale since 1986.
Introduced by the Coffee Research Institute (CRI) on the 8th of September 2010, Batian is the newest varietal on offer from Kenya. It’s the culmination of further experimentation based on the lessons learned from Ruiru 11. Comparitive cupping tests have indicated superior quality attributes.
Screen sizing in Kenya
The AA, AB and other grades used to classify lots in Kenya are an indication of screen size only. They are not any indication of cup quality. The AA grade in Kenya is equivalent to screen size 17 or 18 (17/64 or 18/64 of an inch) used at other origins. AA grades often command higher prices at auction though this grade is no indication of cup quality and an AB lot from a better farm may cup better.