Introduction by Chris Kornman
Bishan Fugu is the name of a smallholder association organized around the Adinew family’s large estate that spans the border between two of Ethiopia’s largest regions: SNNP & Oromia. We actually just featured a dry-processed coffee from the same group, but couldn’t help ourselves when we tasted this double-washed coffee from one of our favorite sources in Southern Ethiopia.
The Hambela region is home to an estate, washing stations, and collection points owned and operated by METAD Agricultural Development PLC. The family-run company was gifted property by Emperor Selassie in honor of the matriarch, Muluemebet Emiru, the first African female pilot. METAD is now managed by her grandson Aman Adinew, and its export partner Rift Valley Trading LLC is operated by his brother Michael Adinew. Among the many important pieces of work undertaken by METAD are their commitment to equal employment opportunities for women and education opportunities for the youth of the coffeelands, their early partnerships with Grounds for Health, and their development of Africa’s first SCAA certified lab.
In the field, not only have they established their own harvesting sites, but they have partnered with smallholder associations. They don’t simply buy the coffee cherry from the local farmers, but they provide them with pre- and post-harvest trainings. These trainings include agriculture and business management help, with the intention of reaching beyond simply getting better coffee to create better, mores sustainable communities.
This double-washed Bishan Fugu is selected from one such smallholder association. The coffee uses a common East African tactic of soaking the parchment coffee in clean water after fermentation. Not only does this help remove any leftover pulp on the seeds, it also triggers the seed to begin germinating and it’s speculated this can improve the flavor.
Green Analysis by Chris Kornman
Characteristically dry and dense with a small screen size, this double-washed Bishan Fugu fits the mold of Ethiopian coffees, particularly this season. As we get later into the season, we’re starting to see some more moderate measurements in our Ethiopian coffees, however, the region is still to some degree affected by a drought that began in 2015, compounded by an unusual frost this past winter in some microclimates. Droughts are, unfortunately, becoming more severe and more frequent in Africa’s horn. Compound this with political unrest that damaged or destroyed a number of coffee washing stations last year in Southern Ethiopia, and there’s a real possibility we might never see more and better coffee from these regions than we do now.
Roast Analysis by Jen Apodaca
This coffee has such a unique flavor profile and reminds me of more complex sweet and sour tropical fruits like mango and passion fruit. Like most Ethiopian coffees there are also an abundance of floral notes that at a lighter roast, could make this coffee taste bitter and grassy. In roast one I think I managed to straddle the line between floral and grassy. If you look at my numbers in roast one they look pretty on par with most light roasts, but the color track readings told a different story revealing my ground sample as extremely light.
In roast two I decided to rectify this light sample by extending the roast. I used a lower charge temperature and applied less heat later in the roast. The overall time of the roast was increased by 2:53. This had the desired impact of muting the acidity and eliminating the grassiness of the roast, but at a cost. The roast had sweet, yet baked neutral sugar browning flavors and the acidity was reduced to a whisper.
If you enjoy a floral profile with a sweet & tart mango acidity, roast this coffee light and let it sit on the shelf for a few days and taste it again. If you want to tame the florals of this coffee down to an indoor voice in the roaster I recommend extending the roast by just a mere 30 seconds to a minute.
Roast one: Meyer lemon, mango, chrysanthemum, guava
Roast two: lemon, almond butter, rose, cookie
Behmor Analysis by Evan Gilman
Unless otherwise noted, I follow a set standard of operations for all my Behmor roasts. Generally, I’ll use the 1lb setting, manual mode (P5), full power, and high drum speed until crack. Read my original post and stats here.
Much like the Kenya Nyeri Kiruga PB from this week, the Bishan Fugu Hambela is a dense coffee. While not quite as dry as the aforementioned Kenya, this coffee also developed quickly in the roaster. Anticipating this, I tried something different than my previous roast: engaging P4 before first crack.
In this case, I could sense first crack approaching due to a few hints including the smell, the slight amount of smoke coming from the roaster, and a pre-crack ‘puffing’ sort of sound coming from the beans. As soon as I heard this last sign, I engaged P4 at 12:10. First crack happened shortly thereafter at 12:25. I allowed the coffee to develop for 1:15 longer, and removed the drum from the roaster for manual cooling.
While this roast achieved 11.9% roast loss, it was a bit underdeveloped. We tasted some nice things on the cupping table: green grape, pear, lemon-lime, and plum. However, it was apparent that more development would have brought out sweeter flavors and a bit more of the sugary aspect of this coffee. Taking this coffee just slightly longer than you’re comfortable with might be rewarding!
Brew Analysis by Richard Sandlin
I brewed the three roasts of this Ethiopian Crown Jewel identical to one another this week. What was remarkable was the wide range in extraction percentage between Probatino roast 01 & the other two roasts. In Jen’s roast analysis above, she touches on how her curve seems on par with most light roast curves whereas the ColorTrack tells another story. I think there are similarities in the brew as well.
I set up all three roasts in a similar fashion, but had some unexpected results…by the numbers. Roast One took much longer to drain – an extra minute. The resulting cup was fairly similar to the other two – but this data point boosted the TDS & Extraction % accordingly.
Interestingly enough, this was the only coffee within the SCA’s accepted gold cup range, 18-22% extraction, while the TDS was above the accepted range of 1.15 – 1.35. The other two roasts fell within the accepted Extraction
This coffee may be a tough roast to nail, but when done well can provide a magnificent cup.
This coffee may be available in full size bags as well. Contact Us to find out more.