Though it happens many times a year, we always experience a flutter of excitement when we release a new coffee. This week is no different. There’s a Kenya on the shelves these days that earned its way onto the “Reserve Coffee” Menu and it’s no big surprise that I report to you its standing on our favorites list. It’s up there, folks. We categorize this Kenya as a “Reserve” for a few reasons: it is available to us in a limited quantity, the price to us was higher than the others on our esteemed menu & its quality, partially identified by the AA rating, is high. We think you’ll agree that this Kenya is exceptional.
The roasters receive so many green coffee samples every year from various producers and distributers. Though they all make it through the sample roaster & onto the cupping table, not all of them are viable options for Victrola’s menu. Either the flavor isn’t distinctive enough, the price is unreasonable or the quality is not to our standard. Often times, samples that make it past the first round of internal tastings may show up on our public cupping table on Wednesday mornings at the Pike St roastery. The public cupping provides a valuable opportunity to see what you all think about incoming coffees – your opinions are a crucial part of the selection process & ultimately, to the composition of our coffee menu. You liked the Kenya Kamuchuni & we listened.
The new Kenya is available at all Victrola cafes in 8oz bags for $12 and at the bar as a 10 ounce Pour Over Coffee for $3 (which is a steal & a good way to experience this coffee) or as French Press (my favorite brew method for this Kenya) when available. You can also purchase the Kenya whole bean at Victrola’s online store.
Here are the details about this awesome new release on our Reserve Menu as composed by the roasting crew.
Facts on Kenya Mukurweini Kamuchuni AA :
Wet Mill: Kamuchuni
Region: Mukurweini District, Central Kenya
Altitude: 4620-5115ft (1400-1550 meters)
Process: Fully washed and sun dried
Varietals: SL 28, some Ruiru 11
Cooperative: Ruthaka FCS Cooperative Society
Fragrance/Aroma: very sweet, floral (violets, rose), stone fruit, vanilla
Flavor: dried apricot, blackberry jam, honey, ginger, cola
Body: medium, round, silky, relatively heavy for a Kenya
Finish: clean, sweet
Acidity: medium-high, lemon, cranberry, juicy, winey
We love coffees from Kenya, and have found one from the Kamuchuni wet mill in Mukurweini
that both satisfies and surprises the Kenyan coffee aficionado: satisfying with dried apricot
and blackberry jam fruit flavors in the cup, yet surprising with its sweetly floral rose and
violet nose. The body is also unusually full for a Kenyan coffee, but still smooth and silky.
Aromatically the coffee is vibrant and intense. As the cup cools, the bright notes mellow and
the fruit becomes more distinct and candy-like.
Mukurweini is located on the southwest slopes of Mt. Kenya, and used to be considered part
of the better recognized Nyeri district. Built in 1987, the wet mill processes the coffee for
564 members of the Ruthaka FCS Cooperative, of which almost 34% are women. Each farmer
has a small plot of land, averaging 1.5 acres or about 200 coffee trees. The coffee cherry
harvested by the co-op members is delivered to the Kamuchuni wet mill daily. Red ripe
cherries are separated from the underipes and overipes before being pulped, fermented and
washed using clean local river water. In the name, AA refers to the grade and size of coffee,
with AA being the largest screen size of the highest quality grade.
The Kenya Kamuchuni is round, complex, and has a surprisingly full body. In the cup, it reveals layers of stone fruit, dark berries, and citrus under a sweetly floral nose. We look forward to sharing this coffee with you at the bar or in the cupping room!