Flavor Profile Floral, lemon, peach, mango, orange, butter, and black tea
Check out our Guide to Ethiopian Coffee Grades
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This is a traditional double-washed coffee from Gedeo, Ethiopia, produced by farmer Desta Gola and the Adame Gorbota Cooperative. It is certified Organic.
The flavor profile is complex and iconic, centering around lemony citrus, peachy stone fruit, intense floral ,and tropical mango notes.
Our roasters found the dense green coffee responded well to high heat and quicker roasting.
When brewed, our baristas found the coffee easy to dial on many different extractions but felt especially cozy with a standard ratio and slightly coarser grind setting, and struck gold with slower espresso extractions.
Taste Analysis by Chris Kornman
The return of an old friend, Desta Gola’s delicate, nuanced, and delightful washed coffee graces our menu for the third consecutive season. With the help of Adame Gorbota Cooperative, Desta Gola has consistently produced top tier coffee coffees, and he delivers once again an absolutely elegant, iconic, and stunning coffee that nearly left us speechless at the cupping table. Our only regret is that there isn’t more of it to offer, the selection is extremely limited this year. If you’re thinking about carrying a washed Ethiopian Crown Jewel this year, don’t sleep on your chance to roast this one.
Its flavor profile is led by the classic, unim-peach-able combination of lemony citrus, intense florals, and sweet stone fruits, our team noted the complexity of each of these categories with a wide array of specific flavors. Clear lemon, lime zest, mango, and orange with hints of bergamot and passionfruit were all called up to play for the higher acidity fruit squad. Meanwhile, peach, plum, pluot, apricot, and even some fig and pear made appearances in the stone fruit (or stone fruit adjacent) category. The coffee’s floral notes represent a really interesting and somewhat subtle intersection between elegant flowers, warm spice, and sweet herbal tones. We noted black tea, vanilla, rosemary, lemongrass, chai, cardamom, juniper, and of course jasmine.
It’s a generous coffee, both forgiving in the roaster and easy to manage for the barista, offering copious complexity and yielding effortlessly enjoyable results. We hope you like it as much as we do; we’ll be reserving just a small portion for ourselves to serve as pour-overs here at The Crown.
Source Analysis by Mayra Orellana-Powell
The creation of the Ethiopian Commodity Exchange (ECX) in 2008 significantly limited full traceability back to specific farmers. In response, Royal established the Single Farmer Lots Program to separate single farmer lots from the larger cooperative blends sold through the ECX. Annual farm visits from Royal CEO Max Nicholas-Fulmer and regular communication with farmers through Haile Andualem, Royal’s representative on the ground in Ethiopia, has been an essential component for ensuring that farmers and washing stations are following strict farm management and post-harvest protocols. The results have been increasing cup quality and higher returns for the individual producers that Royal has come to count on for great coffee year after year. Returning to Royal with another amazing harvest, Desta Gola cultivated this single farmer lot on his 10-acre farm near the town of Gorbota located in the heart of the coveted Gedeo grow Zone.
Desta has been cultivating coffee since 2013 and with the help of the single lot program he has been able to sell his coffee as a micro-lot in recent years. Coffee is Desta’s main source of income to support his wife and their nine children (6 girls and 3 boys). Ripe cherries for this washed processed coffee were taken to the Adame Garbota Cooperative where Desta is a member. At the cooperative the cherries are carefully hand sorted and floated to remove less dense coffee beans, then depulped, fermented for 48 hours, and washed and classified again in channels. The parchment is placed on raised beds where it is hand sorted again and dried over a period of 12 to 15 days. The parchment is often covered during the afternoons to prevent harsh drying in the intense sun. When the coffee reaches 11 percent moisture content, it is transported to Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia, to be milled and prepared for export.
Green Analysis by Chris Kornman
A repeat Crown Jewel for at least the third consecutive season, Desta Gola’s coffees are not only incredible tasting but consistently excellently graded. Last year I called the green coffee “prototypical” in its grading, a “classic washed Ethiopian Grade 1 green” and this year is the same, as was the prior year. Credit where it’s due, Desta Gola and the Adame Gorbota cooperative are blowing the competition away with their consistency and precision.
This year’s harvest comes to us with a small screen size, very high density, moderately low moisture content, and stable water activity numbers.
While there are certainly true heirloom coffees grown in much of Ethiopia, it’s also true that a relatively small number of highly controlled cultivars — both lab-crafted hybrids and selected landraces — are often the main components of specialty coffees throughout the nation. The selections have not been denoted here for us, but it’s fair to assume they are similar stock to the greater southern coffee regions, hardy and well adapted for cultivation in this, one of the world’s most coveted terroirs.
(Check out my recent Guide to Ethiopian Coffee Grades if you’re curious to learn more about how export assignments are created, and the implications in the country’s iconic system.)
Diedrich IR-5 Analysis by Doris Garrido
Orange blossom is one of my favorite notes when tasting Ethiopian coffee. And it is a goal to look for it when roasting, it is not that roasting creates it, but if the coffee has it, I want to make sure I get it.
The metric on green analysis is a great tool when starting a new profile, knowing the coffee origin, cultivar size, fermentation process, density, and moisture will help a lot, but also I feel necessary to trust instinct because in the end there’s no formula to calculate how much heat a coffee is going to need to start the roast. In this case, the information I have worked great with instinct. This is a dense coffee, indigenous heirloom cultivar mostly small and average in moisture. The small size and the high density tell me about the need for a lot of push during drying, as it is going to be hard for the heat to get through the bean layers. The 10.4% moisture will allow me to maintain the fruitiness of the coffee and look for the floral orange blossom.
For the 5.5 lbs. batch, I started the roast with the charge temperature of 447F along with 50% of the airflow. For this, I warmed up the drum and passed my desired charge temperature for like 5 degrees, then started at 50% air and let it coast till the temperature become stable. For a delicate coffee like the heirloom Ethiopian, air works fantastic during the whole roast, but especially during the caramelization area in Maillard.
I ran 100% gas from the beginning of the roast till 3 minutes, having a good push on the turning point. First I lowered to 60% and then to 30% and hit color change at 310F. I got 3:14 minutes in Maillard running smoothly lowering the rate of change from 34/1 minute from color change to 16/1 minute at cracking. Increasing the airflow to 100% at this point gave it a post-development of 1:34 minutes at a 394F drop temperature. To keep the juicy fruity notes, I look for a lower temperature at the end and develop the coffee enough to have a sweet caramelization without bitterness. On cupping this coffee ended with notes of fresh basil, clean, floral, green apple, lemon-lime, sweets herbs, chamomile, fruity, and green mango. This roast shows the florals and the juiciness of the coffee, and I think that for this type of profile the hard push works simply great, but also can be roasted slower and the quality of the coffee will stay, just because this is a good coffee.
Aillio Bullet R1 IBTS Analysis by Evan Gilman
Unless otherwise noted, we use both the roast.world site and Artisan software to document our roasts on the Bullet. You can find our roast documentation below, by searching on roast.world, or by clicking on the Artisan links below.
Generally, we have good results starting our 500g roasts with 428F preheating, P6 power, F2 fan, and d6 drum speed. Take a look at our roast profiles below, as they are constantly changing!
For this roast of the much vaunted and repeat appearance Crown Jewel by Desta Gola, I followed the good advice of my compatriots and tried a fast roast to bring out the bright and peachy characteristics I knew would be in this coffee.
Starting with what is a high charge temperature for my roasting practice (482F), I hit this coffee with plenty of heat. I also wanted to get ample caramelization through more conductive contact with the drum for this roast, and reduced drum speed to d4 just to see how that worked out. P9 power and F2 fan assured that I’d be on my way swiftly without using a ‘soak’ and I followed along this path until peak rate of change at 36F/min. At that point, I reduced heat to P8 and increased fan to F3 to begin the draw downwards. At yellowing, I reduced heat further to P7, and followed up with F4 fan shortly afterwards. I thought this would help prevent the usual spike I see at about 365F, and it did… until I saw the spike at 370F. The rate of change wavered but generally flattened out until crack at this point, at an average of about 22F/min – a bit faster than I like at this point in the roast. I lowered heat further to P6 and increased fan to F5 to really pull back on this roast, only succeeding in reducing my rate of change after first crack, where I reduced even further to P5, but returned to F4 fan so as not to induce a crash. I finished the roast at 393F / 8:34 with some satisfaction at the amount of post-crack development I was able to achieve even at this low drop temperature.
If I were to offer any advice with this coffee, it would be to anticipate the late roast ‘momentum’ that you’ll experience. Especially when roasting fast, you’ll need to temper your heat application so that the coffee doesn’t fly off the handle. This coffee is very flexible, however, so any early mistakes may just be forgiven in the cup…
Just as they were in mine. At first, this cup was very brown sugar focused, with cooked peach richness throughout. As it cooled, it became brighter and brighter, with cranberry tartness making a showing alongside Gravenstein apple crispness, vanilla overtones, and bright lemony acidity. This is a very dynamic coffee, and one I’m sure you’ll enjoy in any brew method from cupping all the way to espresso. Brew with confidence, Desta Gola’s coffee is back.
Follow along with my roast here at roast.world:
Ikawa Pro V3 Analysis by Isabella Vitaliano
Our current Ikawa practice compares two sample roast profiles, originally designed for different densities of green coffee. The two roasts differ slightly in total length, charge temperature, and time spent between color change in first crack. You can learn more about the profiles here.
Our first Ethiopia arrival of the year and certainly not the last. The Crown Jewel program is starting off strong with this heavy hitter from Desta Golo who has been growing coffee since 2013. This coffee won us over with its aromatic florals, sweet date, green apple, and layers of tropical fruit.
The light density was up first on the table and when hot Doris and I got notes of grapefruit, mild peach sweet caramel, and some slight toasty notes. It was vibrant when hot but as it cooled down it mellowed out and lost some of its flavor. The high-density roast had a plum in full force paired with chamomile, cranberry, and lemon zest. The body was butter, and this cup was highly layered and complex. Unlike the light-density roast, this cup improved with time.
Doris and I unanimously agreed that the high-density roast was preferred. The bright acidity was complemented by an intricate complexity that had us going back for more. I imagine this as a pour-over is particularly delicious. Happy sipping!
You can roast your own by linking to our profiles in the Ikawa Pro app here:
Roast 1: Low Density Sample Roast
Roast 2: High Density Sample Roast
Brew Analysis by Grace Newcomb
The first brew of this double-washed gem from a single lot in Gedeo, Ethiopia extracted nicely at 18.46%, with a TDS of 1.38, however, it was quite dense in body and richness. During the process, I used the Kalita Wave for my brew device, a medium to coarse grind set at 9, 19 grams of coffee, and a low brew temp of 201. The brew time for this cup was 3:30, and the end result was a lot of natural sweetness, and nice acidity, yet the tobacco and bitter notes seemed to be more prominent and overshadowing, leaving a seemingly unbalanced profile. Some common notes found in this coffee were candied lemon, peach, black tea, tobacco, and soil.
The second time around I used the same device and dose but decided to go coarser, setting the grind at 10. Although slightly under-extracted, with a percentage of 17.77%, this cup was quite nice! Brewing in just under 4 minutes, with a TDS of 1.33, we were provided with a buttery profile, with hints of citrus and earthy sweetness. Some common notes shared were mango, butterscotch, peaches, orange, and maple.
Feeling like my grind setting is where it needs to be, I decided to lower the dose to 18g and switch my brew device to the Hario V60 in hopes this will improve the extraction, whilst maintaining the silky body and fruity profile. With a brew time of 4:38, a TDS, of 1.40, and an extraction percentage of 19.97%, this cup was lovely, and had a smooth & fuller body, however, much more spiced and lacking the punchy citrus noted in the first two brews. Some common notes found were blackberry, almond butter, stone fruit, and vanilla.
I feel like 18 grams is a great dose for this coffee, but I’d still like to experiment with a slightly coarser grind setting, so I decided to take it up to 10.5. Sticking with the Hario V60, this cup brewed in 3:30, with a TDS of 1.26, and an extraction percentage of 18.12%. Although the TDS was low, this brew was full of flavor and had a light and airy body, and its zesty citrus, fruity and floral notes made it almost tea like. Some common notes tasted in this cup were earl grey, lemon/lime zest, toasted rice, and apricot.
So far, I feel like I’ve found my preferred dose and grind setting, however, two things I haven’t experimented with thus far are bloom time and the Bee House. So far, all cups leading up to this 5th were giving a standard 40 second bloom, but I wanted to see what kind of profile an extended bloom time of 60 seconds would provide. Brewing in 3:45, with a TDS of 1.33, and an extraction percentage at 19.01%, this brew maintained the subtleties of black tea but was met with a fuller body, richer earthy sweetness and savory herbs, and much more spice. I’d say the time of year I imagined while sipping this last brew was much like the time this lot was harvested, during the fall through December. Some common notes here were citrus, savory herbs, stone fruit, cinnamon, and vanilla.
This was a fun coffee to experiment with, although it didn’t take long at all to find a good dial. One thing that I noted was shared amongst all 5 brews were their discerning notes of stone fruit and citrus, and I believe one would be able to produce a cup with these qualities no matter what way they prefer to brew. That being said, as far as choosing a favorite dial goes, it was quite hard to choose between cups 4 & 5. They were both so lovely, yet so very different. I’d say that the feeling of “cozy” the last brew gave me always wins, so for that I’d suggest starting with a coarse grind, dosing at 18 grams while using a Bee House, but really any single-serve brew device will do just fine at providing a well balanced, and memorable cup of coffee at home.
Espresso Analysis by MJ Smith
Whenever I see the name Desta Gola, my brain tries to turn it into “dust of gold” (possibly because every time I’ve tried his coffee, it lights up my palette like gold!) This double-washed coffee works perfectly as espresso, with exciting tasting notes ranging from peach rings candy to pecan pie, and a super clean, lemony-fresh finish. I tasted shots from all across our dial range and found something pleasant in each one, but here are some notes from a couple of my favorites…
My favorite shot of the bunch (with a dose of 18g, a yield of 38.4g, and a pull time of 34 seconds) had all of us saying “Peach Rings!” It was sweet and tart but also had a nice warm, sugary essence to it as well. Think stone fruit cobbler meets pecan pie. Additionally, we picked up notes of maple syrup, lemon, blueberry, turmeric, brown sugar, caramel, orange, and chocolate. Something to love for everyone!
Next up, we’ve got a shot with a dose of 19.5g, a yield of 37g, and a pull time of 33 seconds. With the bumped-up dose, this shot had a bit more body to it and brought forth more of that brown sugar sweetness. While that first shot I mentioned might be better enjoyed by itself, this one could be a little more suited for a cappuccino or other milk-based beverage. We picked up notes of apple pie, brown sugar, candied orange, sweet grapefruit, clove, starfruit, cranberry, and cacao nib.
This coffee is going to treat you right however it’s pulled, but I might recommend a slower pull time in the 32-34 second range, as that’s where I found it really shined like gold. It feels like the perfect espresso to help us transition from summer to fall, as it captures signature notes from both seasons. Hope you enjoy!