Lining up another Kenyan straight after the end of the run for our Gicherori. This time is a coffee from the Kirinyaga region, one that is a little different to the coffees from the bigger co-ops that most of us are used to.
Muthonjo is one of multiple small estates growing and processing its own coffee in the Central Province of Kenya. Located around 5km outside the town of Kiamutugu, the estate benefits from the fertile soils found in the slopes of Mount Kenya. The estate plants maize, and bananas for sustenance and gravellea and macadamia as shade trees.
Small estates are a very exciting burgeoning frontier in the Kenya coffee market. Farms comprised of three or more hectares are able to acquire a grower’s license allowing them to wet mill and choose their marketing agent apart from the larger factories owned by the Farmer Cooperative Societies. This additional freedom allows for more quality control to happen in the hands of the farmer. Opportunities for cupping feedback and improvement are extremely high.
Wetmill: Muthonjo Estate
Varietal: SL 28, SL 34 and Ruiru
Altitude: 1650 masl
Processing: All coffees are pulped, dry fermented, washed, soaked and sun-dried. Cherries are hand sorted for unripes and overripes by the farmers before they go in to production. A disc pulper removes the skin and pulp. The coffees are graded by density in to 3 grades by the pulper. Grade 1 and 2 go separately to fermentation. Grade 3 is considered low grade. The coffee is fermented for 16-24 hours under closed shade. After fermentation the coffees are washed and again graded by density in washing channels and are then soaked under clean water for 16-20 hours. The coffees are then sun-dried up to 15 days on African drying beds, covered in plastic during midday and at night.
This coffee from Muthunjo exhibits the classic Kenyan cup profile of blackcurrant notes with a juicy mouthfeel and pleasant honey sweetness. This might pair very well with those CNY goodies, so stock this up for the lunar new year and share them with friends and family as we countdown to the year of the Rooster!
Available in-store or on web.