Insight from our Master Coffee Importer
Ethiopian Yirgacheffe is a very alluring coffee! The citrus notes have a truly unique character. After grinding, you will notice a sweet caramel fragrance. After brewing, you may notice a spicy, pepper note. The finish is zesty with hints of plum.
Ethiopia is the birthplace of coffee. The regal coffees from this country are deserving of such a heritage and stand up to the calling. Referring to Ethiopia as a country of single origin, however, is misleading. Coffees from the different growing regions vary so incredibly that they do not even seem to be from the same planet!
Ethiopian Yirgacheffes are amazing and unique coffees. Yirgacheffe is a town in the Sidamo region of Ethiopia, and the coffees from this region will surprise you with their floral and tangerine notes.
In a stellar Yirgacheffe, even the grounds have an exotic tropical toasted coconut aroma that will knock you over with its charms. Sometimes Coffee Joe's will try to compare Yirgacheffes to other coffees, such as a bright Central American or an exciting Kenyan, just south of the border from Ethiopia, but there truly is not a real comparison. I guess you can compare a new Beaujolais bursting with wild fruit to a regal old Cabernet that has been thinking about being a wine for a decade and call them both reds, but . . . well you get my point.
Another amazing growing region within Ethiopia is the Harrar region. Harrars are wild coffees. What's a wild coffee, you ask? The term is a fancy name for dry process or natural coffee where the coffee fruit dries on the bean, imparting the flavors of compote fruit and dark rich chocolate. Harrars are this and more! You will taste blueberry jam, cocoa, and maybe even a touch of cinnamon and cardamom in these amazing coffees.
Coffee holds a special place in Ethiopian culture that transcends that of the coffees from other origin countries. The majority of the crop does not even leave the country and is drunk with great ceremony by the Ethiopian people. This is in contrast to other origins where coffee is a cash crop, with the best being exported, and the dregs kept locally and drunk unceremoniously with plenty of milk and sugar to choke it down.
One taste of an excellent Ethiopian coffee and you will understand this passion for the bean.