The Guchienda Estate is one of our more exciting projects in Kenya. This year, it won the annual African Taste of Harvest competition! The lot is 100% pure SL28, dynamic and exciting. In the cup we find a classic Kenyan profile of blackberry, hibiscus, and subtle florals.
Kibugu, Embu County
Hand-picked at peak ripeness. Hand-sorted to ensure only the very best cherries are selected. Depulped. Fermented for ~24 hours. Floated through channels to sort by density and remove remaining defects. Soaked overnight in fresh water. Dried on raised beds for 15 days while continually turned and hand sorted.
This is an inspiring single-estate project that we've been working with for a few years. Kenyan coffee is traditionally purchased through larger washing stations, where transparency is difficult at best. Working directly with a single estate allows for better transparency, opportunities for variety separations, and the potential to directly address issues such as soil health. This estate is run by brothers Edwin and Benson, and their mother, Esther.
“SL” is in reference to single tree selections made by Scott Agricultural Laboratories in 1935-1939. SL28 is of the Bourbon genetic group, and was selected for its drought resistance as well as its extremely high cup quality. SL28 is one of the most well-known and well-regarded varieties in Africa. It has consequently spread from Kenya to other parts of Africa as well as Central and South America. SL28 is non-hybrid, and very susceptible to disease.
The cost of getting a coffee from cherry to beverage varies enormously depending on its place of origin and the location of its consumption. The inclusion of price transparency is a starting point to inform broader conversation around the true costs of production and the sustainability of specialty coffee as a whole.