||Tanzania Burka Block D Bourbon / Kent Natural 2015
||Varietal: Bourbon N39 and Kent KP423
This coffee comes from the Arusha, Arumeru district, in Northern Tanzania, on the lower slopes of Mount Meru (which rises to a whopping 4,565 metres). Arusha town centre is approximately 8 kilometres from the estates, but over recent years the urban sprawl has meant that the town has expanded up to the borders of the estates.
Burka was founded in 1899 by a German settler (a Mr. Rahn), who decided to plant coffee to send back to his native Germany. Burka covers 1,437 acres, of which 870 acres are coffee. The neighbouring estate, Selian, is also owned by the same group.
The estates have about 200 permanent staff as well as 200 daily causal staff; however, in the peak of the harvest season, there can be up to 5,000 staff involved in picking and processing. All permanent staff are provided with housing on the estates (in four different camps), and the minimum salary is set at 20% above the government minimum requirement. Staff have social security and labour union membership included in their contracts, and an estate credit union also offers loans and advice for education, health, and house construction.
Each estate has its own nursery which educates over 100 children, and two primary schools also cater for over 600 children, who come from the estate workers' families and the neighbouring communities. An on-site health centre with estate nurse and dispensary is available to meet the needs of all staff, and the estate has its own ambulance. It also has shops, sport facilities, churches, and a mosque.
Regular inter-estate and inter-camp football & netball matches occur, along with staff BBQs and other holiday celebrations. Workers are supplied with free firewood from stumped coffee trees, and fruit & nut trees are grown around the staff villages.
Last year was the first time I'd seen a naturally processed coffee come out of Tanzania and I'm super excited to see it happen again this year.
Ripe cherries are delivered to the mill within 6 hours of picking and are sorted and hand-picked then placed onto raised African drying beds. The drying period generally lasts for 2-3 weeks, until the moisture level in the coffee reaches 12% or lower, with regular turning, particularly in the first 7 days to ensure even rates of drying. Parchment is transported to Moshi for milling and bagging, and then to Dar Es Salaam for export. The waste cherry pulp is mixed with worms and produce organic fertiliser, which is then re-used on the estates.
Burka has its own cupping lab on site and samples of each day’s lot are cupped and assessed for quality. As I mentioned above this is the second season natural production at Burka and you should start getting excited about what they're up to behind the scenes, they're experimenting with various washing processing methods and also different patio vs raised bed drying with different turning rates.
This coffee is a mixture of Bourbon and Kent KP423 varietals at roughly 56% Bourbon vs 44% Kent KP423.
In the cup expect sweet red liquorice mixed with a real hit of thick dried fruit, think juicy currants or a particularly big cluster of sultanas smushed together. There's a little smokiness to the cup but overall it's dominated by the sweet liquorice and dried fruit.
Varietal: Bourbon N39 and Kent KP423
Altitude: 1,340 - 1,470 m.a.s.l.
Soil: Volcanic tuffs and basalt-based soils, ranging from clay loams to sandy clay loams.
Temperature: 8ºC - 30ºC
Take this in to first pops of second crack, but slow the roast down and drag out if you can to increase already big body.
"Quick Look" Guide
Red liquorice, sweet, dried fruit, currants, sultanas, smokey.
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