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ethiopian yirgacheffe


Top 4 reasons the Yirgacheffe region grows some of the most revered coffee in the world


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High elevation

Means a sweeter bean

1. High elevation helps coffee beans become sweeter

The Yirgacheffe is grown at high elevation (1,700 - 2, 200 meters above sea level) by small scale farmers without the use of agricultural chemicals. The beans are hand-picked and then wet processed or washed. This process is significant as it results in coffee with gentle, round, delicately complex, and with floral notes. It has been described as the world’s most distinctive coffee.

Coffee beans which are grown at high altitude are hard, dense, and possess a superior coffee flavor. It is generally regarded that as altitude increases, a coffee’s flavor profile becomes more distinctive.

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SLOW Natural processing

Time for notes to take hold

2. Natural processing makes coffee taste more distinctive

Ethiopian coffee flavor profiles are made all the more interesting thanks to the processing methods that are used in ways that don't really occur elsewhere (except perhaps Brazil). In Ethiopia, coffees can be processed either as:

• Natural (or sun-dried): where the cherry is sun-dried around the coffee bean before being removed. Naturally processed Ethiopian coffees often have a syrupy body that accompanies a densely sweet berry flavor, typically blueberry or strawberry. Naturals tend to be fruity, heavy, and wine-like; or

• Washed: where the fruit is removed from the bean within 12 hours of picking. Washed coffees usually have jasmine or citrus characteristics, and are lighter and drier on the palate and tend to have a floral, tea-like delicacy to them.

 
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wider genetic variety

more unique flavors

3. Wider genetic variation makes each cup unique

While the rest of the world’s coffee, to a certain extent, is derived from the few plants that were stolen from Yemen back in the days, there is a substantial genetic variation among the coffee plants in Ethiopia. It’s estimated that more than 90 percent of the genetic material of coffee arabica is located in just that one country. For this reason, you can experience more different flavors in Ethiopian coffee than anywhere else.

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including the highly sought after

BLueberry note

4. The blueberry note can be found here

This region is typically associated with notes of blueberry – which if you’re a real coffee geek – is one of the ultimate flavors. The coffee coming out of these few villages comprising the Yirgacheffe area is some of the most amazing, sweet and floral coffee in the world. Expect a lot of stone fruits, lime, and florals. Once in a while, you can get more unusual flavors such as mint and bergamot, too. There’s a lot of high quality washed coffee coming from the washing stations such as Aricha, Chelbessa, and Idido. You can encounter fantastic dry-processed coffee from this region. These typically, have notes of strawberry, and even occasionally, the sought after blueberry note.

 

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It takes a little bit of science and a whole lot of practice over many years to learn how to bring out the unique notes of African coffee.

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