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Burundi Gashoho

Bavyeyi Raised Bed Natural

Christopher C.

Thursday, October 13, 2022

Of all the Roaster’s Choice coffees we’ve sourced over the past four or five years, those from Burundi are always a treat. November’s selection is a Burundi Gashoho, grown sky-high at 1,715 masl by smallholders organized around the Bavyeyi III processing station. This exquisite coffee features notes of blackberry, rose water, and chocolate cake. In terms of complex African coffees, this one is one of the most dynamic we’ve ever tasted. November can’t get here fast enough.

Burundian coffee farmers sort coffee cherries.

When you think African coffee, your brain probably goes to Ethiopia (aka the motherland), making Burundi—and Rwanda to the north—something of a hidden or underappreciated gem. Burundi is blessed by astounding terroir: mountains that pierce the sky, prolific soil, and plentiful shade. Though the growing conditions sound idyllic, there is one catch. The coffee can take between 20 – 30 days to dry because of the cool climate. To mitigate this, producers must continuously circulate the coffee for even air exposure, resulting in a cup that is, against all odds, noticeably balanced and crisp.

A Burundian coffee farm.

The Bavyeyi III smallholders and other rural Burundians have benefited greatly from the involvement of Jeanine Niyonzima-Aroian, whose work has established and continued economic empowerment programs for the last 13 years. President of JNP Coffee, Niyonzima-Aroian is dedicated to improving the quality of life of her native people in Burundi. To quote JNP Coffee, “Together, we inspire transformational change.”


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