The Ethiopian Charm

Ethiopia has some of the mostly highly sought after coffee beans. Even though coffee is grown in several African countries, there is something that makes coffee enthusiasts just go ga-ga about the ones from Ethiopia. What makes Ethiopian coffees so special?

For one thing, landscape plays a huge part in creating unique beans from country to country. The altitude, soil type, and climate all affect the flavor that will ultimately end up in your cup. Apparently Ethiopia hit the jackpot for coffee growing conditions! Their high elevations combined with ideal rainfall and temperatures come together perfectly to produce outstanding coffee.

Processing Affects Flavor

Another thing impacting the flavor of any coffee bean, no matter where it’s grown, is the processing. The beans don’t look like the beans we’re accustomed to when they’re picked. Instead, when the coffees are picked from the trees, they look like cherries; in fact, they’re called coffee cherries.

Two seeds lie in the center of the cherry that become the coffee beans that we recognize. They have to be separated from everything else, and getting to these beans is where processing comes in. Processing is the removal of all the stuff – pulp, mucilage, parchment, and skin – that surrounds the coffee beans in the middle of the cherry. There are several ways it can be done, but the 2 most common ones in Ethiopia are natural and washed.

Natural

The natural process dries the whole fruit intact in the sun. Cherries are spread out on raised drying beds to allow air to circulate around them. The beans are raked and turned often to keep them from spoiling and to make sure the batch dries uniformly. At night and during rains they are covered with tarps to keep them dry. It is several weeks before the moisture content is low enough and the fruit can be removed.

With this method, the beans absorb flavor from the fruit while it’s still on the bean. The result is a very fruity drink, which Ethiopian coffees are famous for.

Washed

The washed process is just the opposite of the natural. The cherries are pulped right away after being picked, taking the skin and most of the fruit from the seed. The stripped beans are then soaked in a nice, long water bath causing fermentation to occur. Fermentation softens and breaks down the mucilage that was left after pulping. Once fermenting is finished, the beans are cleaned of all remaining fruit and rinsed with water to stop the fermenting process. The fully cleaned beans are now ready for drying which can be done in the sun or by machine.

Since the washed process takes the fruit away quickly, the fruit does not continue to affect the flavor of the bean. The taste that’s left is solely the bean, and is characterized as having more of a ‘coffee’ taste than the natural. Washed coffees are typically described as bright, clean tasting, and complex.

The Regional Taste

Location is yet another component affecting flavor. Ethiopia is divided into coffee growing regions that have their own set of conditions affecting taste. Beans are different from region to region because of differing altitudes, temperatures, and climates. Four regions represented at Texas Coffee Club are Sidamo, Yirgacheffe, Harrar, and Guji.

Sidamo

Sidamo coffees are rich, have complex bodies and taste notes of spices, floral, fruit, and citrus. If you have a taste for a Sidamo, we can point you to some great ones from these Texas roasters:

Ethiopian coffees sidamo enduro
Ethiopian coffees sidamo eiland
Ethiopian coffees sidamo the duck coffee co.

Yirgacheffe

Next is the Yirgacheffe region which is actually a subregion within Sidamo. Yirgacheffes are often ranked as some of the best in the world, and frequently described as floral, bright, and fruity. Take a look at the Yirgacheffes from these Texan roasters:

Ethiopian coffees Yirgacheffe
Ethiopian coffees, Yirgacheffe Civil goat
Ethiopian coffees, Yirgacheffe, Driftwood
Ethiopian coffees, Yirgacheffe, Malone
Ethiopian coffees, Yirgacheffe, Vault coffee co
Ethiopian coffees, Yirgacheffe, Tierrras Planas

Harrar

Another region is Harrar, where coffees are fruity and floral. These coffees have notes of blueberries and possibly hints of jasmine in the finish.

Ethiopian coffees, Harrar, Map
Ethiopian coffees, Harrar, washed coffee beans
Ethiopian coffees, Harrar, B.G coffee

Guji

Finally we have the Guji region whose coffees tend to be fruity, floral, and sweet. Several of our Texas roasters are offering Gujis:

Ethiopian coffees, Guji, Map
Ethiopian coffees, Guji, Cultivar
Ethiopian coffees, Guji, Global coffee
Ethiopian coffees, Guji, U.S. Roasts
Ethiopian coffees, Guji, Noble Coyote
Ethiopian coffees, Guji, e=Enduro

Ethiopian Coffees Are Here

We are thrilled to offer 33 Ethiopian coffees and have more coming soon. We have 26 that are single origins and 7 that are blends. With so many great Ethiopian coffees to choose from, why not take an Ethiopian tasting tour at Texas Coffee Club?

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4 thoughts on “Ethiopian Coffees on Texas Coffee Club

  1. 719712 965569Hello! I would wish to supply a large thumbs up for your outstanding info you could have here about this post. Ill be coming back to your blog website for further soon. 23370

  2. I’ve only had Harrar and I have made it in my espresso machine. dark roast with whole froth milk. Most Americans do not know the taste of these wonderful beans. I do my own roasting and wonder if these beans can be purchased un-roasted?

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