Horsham Coffee - Rwanda [Direct Trade]
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The Bwishaza washing station near Kibuye in the Western Province of Rwanda
Natural (Thick Process)
1650 - 1800 masl
Notes of Strawberry, Orange and, Cherry
Located on the north eastern side of Lake Kivu about one hour drive north of Kibuye (google maps link). The Bwishaza co-operative is made up of 590 members and buys additional coffee from 200-300 local producers. Farmers will hand harvest coffee cherries and deliver on the same day to the washing station. The coffee is then hand sorted before processing.
We first visited Bwishaza in 2016 and have been working with them for the last two years on the production of alternative microlots. Rwanda typically produces excellent washed coffees, but really great natural processed coffees are quite rare. During the 2016 harvest we proposed working with them to produce a series of different microlots of a high standard using alternative processing methods. The results were a great success, so in 2017 we made a commitment to refine the process with the washing station, and to purchase each lot at a significant premium.
Once again the results have been a huge success and we are very happy with the quality of this stunning thick natural. Ripe red bourbon cherries were selected by hand after delivery to the washing station and laid to dry in a layer of medium thickness (about 2-3 cherries in depth). The speed of drying and thickness of the bed of cherry can significantly affect the transfer of flavours from the coffee cherry. A medium thick layer helps to slow the drying and to induce more fermentation and funky fruit flavours. In this particular case it's resulted in a wonderfully complex coffee with juicy strawberry liquor flavours and a rich creamy body.