Ephrem Sebatigita has over 35 years' experience in the specialty coffee industry as a producer, consultant, mechanical engineer and instructor. Coffee is a family tradition, since his paternal grandfather, Ntirandekura, was one of Burundi's first coffee promoters in the 1930s. This batch of red bourbon bears witness to his experience and expertise through its uniformity, quality and smoothness.
The Munkaze washing station is located in the natural region of Buyenzi, in the Kayanza province, close to the Kibira forest. Each year, Ephrem expands its plantation by 500 feet with new plantings. In addition to its own cherries, the station collects cherries from 500 smallholders in the surrounding hills. The lots are generally separated by the different hills where the growers are located, and some separated by single growers.
This year, Ephrem is offering us several batches, including this one, #45, from one of his farm's hills, located at an altitude of 1889 meters. The batch is washed after a unique 12-hour fermentation process. It is then dried on drying beds for 15 hours. This process is quite common in Burundi, since the country only produces red Bourbon, and this variety generally produces a fairly mild, balanced coffee with a light fermentation and complete washing.
We were lucky enough to get a 60kg bag of this batch, which we'll be selling in 1/2 lb bags while stocks last!
The development of this café has been a very satisfying and rewarding adventure for me. For the past few months, I've been obsessed with Burundi and dreaming of being able to sell a coffee from this region. Having purchased a sample of a washed red Bourbon from the Long Miles Coffe Project (a community project of washing stations in Burundi) and having loved the profile of the coffee, I was incredibly motivated to sell this coffee but quickly discovered that the batch was virtually impossible to obtain in Canada, being imported only into the United States for the time being. However, I wasn't about to give up my fixation with Burundi.
After a phone call to Apex Coffee Imports, importers of specialty coffee in Montreal, I learned that they currently had a few batches of washed red Bourbon from Burundi. By doing a little cupping with our friends at Apex, I quickly found the profile I was looking for in Burundi coffees: smooth, round and aromatic at the same time. The Sebatigita batch was exactly what I was looking for.
After a few roasting tests, the coffee is now exactly what I was looking for: a coffee with a slightly fruity, slightly juicy, slightly sweet aroma and a sweetness that makes me want to enjoy it every morning. The beauty of washed coffees is that they can surprise, give off funky aromas, taste something special, but always retain a smoothness and clarity that prevents the coffee from being aggressive. You can now see the origin of my obsession with Burundi and their washed coffees.
With a first crack at 8 minutes 36 seconds and 20% development for a total time of 10 minutes 46 seconds, this is a relatively quickly roasted coffee with considerable development time but a relatively low end temperature. It is therefore a pale roast with good development, bringing out fruity, sweet aromas without the bitterness of the darker roast.
Although we recommend a filter infusion to get the most out of this coffee, here's an espresso recipe that brings out the fruity, balanced side without too much acidity:
18 g coffee
45 g extraction
All in 30 seconds
For the pour-over, I particularly like to brew this coffee in V60, as I've found that brewing methods with flow regulation tend to bring out more astringency (as high-density coffees produce more fines). So here's the single-serve recipe I use every morning:
15 g coffee
Water at 202 degrees Fahrenheit (94 degrees Celcius)
Bloom 50ml for 30 seconds (longer blooming is possible, but at the expense of coffee clarity)
Total volume 250 ml (in two 100 ml instalments after bloom)
Total brewing time of 3 minutes
Importer : Apex Coffee Imports
FOB Price :
Our price : 12,61$ CAD/Kg