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Sidama, Ethiopia

Jasmine, cinnamon, bergamot, tea, and cane sugar.

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The town of Deri Kochowa is located in the Sidama Zone of the Southern Nations, Nationalities, and Peoples' Region (SNNPR) of Ethiopia. Sidama is the leading coffee producing zone in Ethiopia and, so, you'll find many coffees labeled "Sidama" or even "Deri Kochowa." The name doesn't guarantee great tasting coffee. One still needs to dig through the harvest samples from the many washing stations to find the real winners.

This particular lot is a late season harvest from one private washing station in Deri Kochowa. The cherries from the heirloom variety coffea shrubs are first run through disc pulpers to remove the tough outer skins and then soaked for three days to break down the mucilage layer. The fruit is then agitated with wooden paddles to free the beans and then given a final water rinse and dried on raised beds. This is the traditional processing method throughout Ethiopia and results in an exceptionally clean bean.


The aromatics of this coffee are beautiful. Floral and spice fragrances last throughout the cup. Grinding the coffee releases a wave of dried wildflower and cinnamon stick aromas. Adding hot water brings out more sweet smelling things, like caramel, brown sugar, and baking spices.

The brewed cup is full of more floral flavors, a complex mix of jasmine and herbal notes backed by a lingering black tea and bergamot (Earl Grey, that is). The sweetness, though, is more refined than the aroma may have suggested, leaning towards cane sugar or a subtle honey. Clean citrus notes emerge as the cup cools, rounding out a cup that is satisfyingly Sidama.


Clintongore Part 2
by Jonathan Bailey

Jon grew up in the untamed forests of Bath, Ohio. He currently lives in Durango, Colorado. Sometimes he rides his bicycle back to the homeland. Watch out for him on West Market Street between Montrose and Highland Square.