Why the Kenya Kiaguthu is king of Specialty Coffee Beans

The new Kenyan Single origin coffee is a truly amazing coffee. It’s grown by the Kiaguthu Wet Mill, a member the Othaya Farmers’ Cooperative Society in Nyeri County. A world renowned coffee growing area, overlooking the commanding Mount Kenya at 1220-2300 metres above sea level and the home of 12,480 hectares of coffee, these beans are processed in Kenya’s complex and specialised method. Kenya consistently brings high-quality and unique coffees to the market and we are lucky enough to have one available.

The beans deliver bright apricot notes, with a lemon and stone fruit acidity, followed by a delightful buttery and apricot-nectar finish. These beans have a deluxe cupping score of 85.25, putting them in the tier of excellence. AA is the highest grade of any Kenyan coffee, assessed on the size of the bean and low imperfections, and these beans have reached the mark. 

These particular beans are are carefully harvested only when the cherry is fully ripened. Then two separate stages of fermentation take place. One, where any bacteria, yeast mucilage and other solids are removed from the beans, and then another where any low-density, low-quality beans are removed. This is followed by a 24 hour soaking stage in which the beans produce a delightful and intricate acidity as the amino acids and proteins increase within the bean.

The drying process for Kenyan beans is also key to their quality. Instead of drying the beans in bags which causes sweating and unusual flavours, the Kenyan method involves a pre-drying process where most moisture evaporates within six hours. Then a second stage using caged, raised drying beds where the coffee is left for 5-10 days, allowing the coffee adequate space and air to breathe.

It’s no wonder this varietal has such a spectacularly exotic flavour profile as Kenya continues to produce some of the world’s most interesting, distinctive and elegant coffees. If you’re looking for a place to start in the specialty coffee world, this bean is the place to start.

(Fun fact: The Nyeri County is home to the Treetops Hotel, where a young princess Elizabeth ascended one night for bed, and descended the next morning as the Queen of England, after her father King George VI died.)

Ryadan Jeavons

by Ryadan Jeavons

Ryd is a passionate coffee educator who started his career in 2000 as a barista. Having seen the coffee industry develop over the years and how much there is to learn about coffee still, his personal mission has become a role as the conduit between the industry and the consumer. He is passionate about educating the public on all the wonderful things we are learning about this golden liquid drink.

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