Tis the season for East African coffees, and we have two Rwandans coming down the line—the first of the two we will be releasing is the Gitesi.
With notes of Eldeflower, Red Currant, and Maple this coffee is coming in at 87.5 on the Q, and has been unreal as a spro or Flat White.
Region: Western Province
Altitude: 1750-1800 masl
Washing Station: Gitesi
Drying: African beds
Cupping notes: Elderflower, Red Current, Maple
Cupping score: 87.50
Gitesi is a private washing station owned and run by a father and son team, Alexis and Aime Gahizi. The washing station was built in 2005 and began processing coffee in 2006, it is located in the sector Gitesi in Western Rwanda. Gitesi has very strong relationships with the farmers in the local community, there are over 1,800 coffee farmers who have been delivering cherry to Gitesi. The washing station has also implemented a bonus system based on performance, which is paid out to the farmers at the end of the year.
Aime has a degree in engineering and has created a very comprehensive water purification system for the washing station, to such an extent that it is being used to model future water purification systems for washing stations.
Competition for cherry can be pretty tough, farmers can deliver to whichever washing station they want. Maintaining a good supply of cherry is dependent on the relationships Gitesi has with farmers and being able to offer competitive pricing.
The cherries are placed in a tank prior to pulping where floaters are removed. A Penagos 800 eco pulper is used here to remove the skin, pulp and 70% of the mucilage. The coffee is then dry fermented for 10-12 hours. After this the parchment is graded and washed in channels, separated into two grades based on density before being soaked under clean water in tanks for 16 hours. The parchment is dried on African drying beds for up to 15 days, the parchment is covered by shade net during midday intense sun, during any rain and at night.