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It's the season for Kenyan coffee!
We have received samples of different coffees to choose which one we will buy. These so-called "preshipment samples" are sent to us before the bags of coffee arrive at the warehouse in Europe. What a chance to taste these lots arriving from different factories. In Kenya, a factory is a washing station, i.e. where the beans are fermented and washed before being dried. It is a plus as roasters to be able to choose and reserve a bag before it is even on European territory. Once the coffee is in Europe, we can also taste it and these are called "arrival samples". These samples represent the product in the warehouse after it has been transported by cargo. In this cuppimg, we had 5 samples from 4 different factories: Baragwi Muchagara, Karimikui, Kiangoi and Kii. For the first four, we tasted AA and for the last one, AA and AB. What do these letters mean, you might ask? In Kenya, beans are graded by size, with AA being the largest, followed by AB, then C, T and up to MH/ML. The AA is generally the most famous, but the AB's can be excellent too and can be a nice surprise. Our choice finally fell on the Kiangoi AA with its notes of rhubarb, honey and apricot so juicy and well-integrated acidity. We are looking forward to May to receive it in our roastery.