Blackcurrant / Melon / Honey
Washing Station – Kiangundo Factory
Farmers – Various
Region – Nyeri, Central Kenya
Variety – Ruiru 11, SL28, SL34
Processing – Washed
Altitude – 1,700 to 1,950 m.a.s.l
Kiangundo Factory (the name for wet mills in Kenya) receives cherry from 690+ producers who farm on the land surrounding the factory in Karatina, Nyeri County. Kiangundo Factory is one of 4 factories managed by Kiama Cooperative Farmers’ Society. Kiama, founded in 2004, represents over 3,000 farmers in Nyeri. Farmers receive regular training in Good Agricultural Practices, including fertiliser application, pruning guidance and renovation advice, which help them keep their small farms in optimal condition.
Nyeri County is one Kenya’s most famous growing regions. Much of the coffee here is cultivated in the foothills of the Aberdare Mountains, which have warm days and cool nights and a plentiful water supply. The name Nyeri is derived from the Masaai word nyiro, meaning red, after the red volcanic soil in the area. The name was adapted by white settler farmers to Nyeri. Most farmers in the area today grow tea and coffee as cash crops. Coffee varieties in the region are usually a mix between SL 28, SL 34 (roughly 80%) Batian and Ruiri 11.
Smallholders handpick ripe cherry and deliver it to the factory that day. At intake, cherry is meticulously sorted. All sorting is overseen by the cherry clerk, who ensures that only ripe, undamaged cherry Is received. Once sorted, cherry is pulped on the factory’s disc pulper and then density sorted. Pulped cherry is dry fermented for 16 to 24 hours. Skilled staff oversee fermentation, checking regularly to ensure fermented is halted at just the right moment. After fermentation, cherry is sent through washing and grading channels. Parchment is soaked for 24 hours and then placed on raised drying beds. Staff sort drying parchment to remove any remaining defective beans and turn parchment constantly to promote even drying. Drying typically takes between 1 and 3 weeks.
We loved this coffee for its well balanced juiciness, sweetness and nice acidity.