First lets talk about the Tanzania. This is the second year that we are bringing in coffee from Shiwanda, a historic Tanzanian estate. The estate was revived in 1998 and is located in the Mbeya region of southern Tanzania, just north of Lake Malawi. Shiwanda is approximately 1,300 acres total of which 300 acres are used for coffee cultivation. The estate placed 2nd in the Tanzania Taste of Harvest in 2007. The estate uses coffee varietals from the Tanzania Coffee Research Institute (TACRI). TACRI is committed to improving coffee quality and diversity in Tanzania and helping revive the Tanzanian coffee industry.
Coffee growing regions in Tanzania have quite a distance between them. There is almost 1000 km between coffee producing regions in the north and south, and its the same for east to west. Coffee in Tanzania can be grown up to 2000 meters above sea level (MASL), lengthening the development process of coffee plants. 90% of coffee producers in Tanzania are smallholder farmers, owning between a half to three hectares. Less than 10% of the coffee is grown on estates. Mbeya, Mbozi, and Mbinga in the south produce close to 50% of the total coffee in Tanzania.
Similar to Kenya, coffee came to Tanzania with the French missionaries in the late 1800’s, and was planted around Mt. Kilimanjaro for the most part (particularly the bourbon varietal). Also, due to the Indian influence in Tanzania, another variety known as Kent is quite popular. The Shiwanda we have this year consists of Bourbon, Kent, and N39 varieties.
The Shiwanda is an exciting coffee, with notes of mango, peach, caramel, and black tea. Come and try it at one of our cafe’s today!
Second, the Sumatra Tano Batak. This is the third year that we have brought in coffee from this cooperative in Sumatra. Sumatran coffees are known for their heavy, unique flavors. The best coffees from Sumatra are produced using their traditional style of processing known as “wet hulled.” Wet hulling is when the coffee is picked at peak ripeness and de-pulped (removing the fruit from the seeds), leaving the seeds in the parchment (thin, protective layer surrounding the seeds). The wet parchment, known as “Gabah,” is dried for about 1 day, at which point it is wet hulled and the remaining seeds are dried under greenhouse solar dryers. The “Asalan,” dried green coffee, is dried to 13% moisture content and then put on density sorting tables and cleaned. Wet-hulling is a very unique way to process coffee and almost exclusively done in Sumatra. It’s also what gives Sumatran coffees their unique appearance and character in the cup.
Tano Batak is a premium mark from the Klasik Beans Cooperative, with which Olam Specialty Coffee works directly. This coffee comes from the Lintong region, around the south-eastern end of the famous Lake Toba. The cooperative has well established relationships with the local farmers and takes pride in sourcing the finest coffees for their premium marks. Klasik Beans is committed to social and environmental sustainability. Farmers are rewarded well for quality and all cooperative employees receive full benefits.We are excited to offer this coffee as our single origin espresso starting on April 10th and you can get it as a hand-brew whenever you like. What an exciting month for coffee at Kaldi’s!