Ruiru Mills Estate

Ruiru Mills Estate

  • Tasting Notes Stewed blueberry, Rum and Raisin
  • Location Kiambu, Kenya
  • Elevation 1950 M
  • Process Natural
  • metafields
    Region Kiambu, Kenya
  • metafields
    Varietal Blue Mountain
  • metafields
    Elevation 1950 masl
  • metafields
    Process Natural
  • metafields
    Importer Olam

Taste Notes

Big and boozy. Stewed blueberry with Rum and Raisin. It's a juicy banger.


This is a Crankhouse first for two reasons:

    1. It's a naturally processed coffee from Kenya which has a great reputation for the quality of its washed coffees with those bright and deep red fruit flavours and high acidity.
    2. The variety is unusual and uncommon -  ‘Blue Mountain’ is a Typica mutation originally found and cultivated in Jamaica’s Blue Mountains. Over time people began naming it after its place of origin - Blue Mountain. It was introduced in West Kenya in 1913.

Ruiru Mills is in Kiambu county which is famous for its large estates, which were originally built by British colonists in the early 20th century. After decolonisation the estates were sold to local Kenyans who have been managing them since. Estates such as Ruiru Mills used to produce the majority of Kenyan coffee, but the increased urban sprawl from Nairobi, as well as the increasing land value in the region has meant that estate coffee production has gradually diminished, while smallholder production elsewhere has increased. Estates such as Ruiru Mills continue a legacy of many generations of coffee production, supported by unparalleled local knowledge and experience.

One of the advantages of a coffee estate over the usual smallholder cooperative producer is the increased control over quality at a farm level. The estate keeps track of pruning cycles, fertiliser application and mulching to keep the trees strong and healthy. This results in big cherries and beans rich in sugar, acids and fats. Hence, extra tasty coffee!

This coffee is naturally processed on raised African beds. Ripe cherries are selectively harvested and floated to select only the ripest, highest quality cherries for processing. These cherries are placed in a single layer on raised drying beds and dried in the sun for up to 6 weeks. The cherries must be manually turned periodically every day to ensure an even drying and prevent mould formation. Once the coffee has reached its optimum moisture content it is rested before being hulled, graded further handpicked, and finally bagged in GrainPro for export.

The standard grading systems for Kenyan coffees is based on screen size:

E (Elephant beans) = screen 19 and up, AA = 17/18, AB = 16/17, PB = Peaberries.

This is an AB lot ie screen size 16/17 and the region has rich volcanic, red and sandy soil.

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