Altitude: 2200 MASL
Washing Station: Aricha Wubanchi
Process: Fully Washed
Aricha is located in Yirgacheffe district, Gedeo zone in the ‘Southern Nations, Nationalities & Peoples’ (SNNP) region of Ethiopia. Over a number of years the region has developed a distinguished reputation for fine coffees, producing some of the most sought-after micro-lots in world. The combination of high altitude (up to 2,200m in some areas), fertile soil, consistent and plentiful rains, and an abundance of local knowledge are all contributing factors to the high status of Yirgacheffe coffees.
The local indigenous ‘heirloom’ varietals – which grow wild in Ethiopia – are responsible for the unique flavour notes which make for an unusual but refined cup. When processed naturally through sun drying these present with juicy and jammy stone-fruit flavours, floral and chocolate notes with a creamy body.
Ripe cherries are delivered to the wet mill for careful sorting and pulping, before fermentation for 36-48 hours, depending on the climactic conditions. After this point the parchment coffee is thoroughly washed and graded by bean density before being dried in the sun on raised African beds for 10-12 days (until the ideal moisture level has been reached). In the daytime the parchment needs to be raked and turned periodically to ensure a consistent drying process. The coffee is also covered between 12pm and 3pm to protect it from the hot sun, and at night time to protect it from rainfall and moisture. Once the coffee has dried to the right level it is transported to Addis Ababa for dry-milling, grading, intensive sorting and handpicking, before being bagged in GrainPro for export.