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Mikuba Hill Espresso - Burundi
Mikuba Hill Espresso - Burundi
A vibrant and sweet espresso with tones of black currants, raspberries jam and chocolate mint in the after-taste. A delicious and balanced experience.
Producer: 774 producers in collaboration with Heza Washing Station
Elevation: 1900-2100 masl
Variety: Red Bourbon
Roasted for: Espresso
We bring you this juicy and bright coffee from Burundi in collaboration with the Long Miles Project.
Switch-backing up mountainsides and across small, hand-built log bridges, visiting Heza Washing Station at 1960 masl can be likened to an off-road adventure.
To say Heza Washing Station is ‘remote’ would be an understatement and yet the community that lives in the surrounding hills is a special one, comprised mostly of coffee farmers. Heza means ‘beautiful place’ in Kirundi, the local language of Burundi.
With panoramic views and an ever-changing East African sky, this washing station lives up to its name.
Heza is the second washing station built by Long Miles Coffee and has been operational since April of 2014. The fantastic conditions in the Kayanza Province and the amount of ripe, dense cherries brought to the station have led the Long Miles team to focus on pioneering a sundried natural coffee initiative.
Heza was built in January of 2014 at the foot of Gitwe hill, and has now been producing coffee for six seasons. From here, the Rwandan border and the tips of the Kibira, Burundi’s only indigenous rainforest, can be seen looming in the distance. The exceptionally high altitude, moderate climate and close proximity to the Kibira bring out the best in the coffee, both growing on the trees and being produced at the washing station.
The individual micro-climates of each hill combined with the station’s ideal conditions guarantee unique and exquisite notes in every cup.
Heza Washing Station processes its coffee by pumping spring water from a nearby natural spring.
During the fully washed process freshly harvested cherries are delivered by coffee farmers to the Long Miles Coffee Washing Station, then floated and hand-sorted for ripeness upon arrival.
The cherries are pulped and undergo a double fermentation process. Parchment spends around twelve hours dry fermenting, then undergoes a twenty-four hour wet fermentation.
It is then rinsed in fresh water, graded by density and left to soak for another four to six hours in the final rinse tank. The parchment is carried to covered drying tables where it spends between six to fortyeight hours pre-drying.
During this time, it is hand-picked for under-ripeness, over-ripeness, insect damage and visual defects. It is then moved to traditional African raised tables where it spends between sixteen to twenty days slow drying (depending on the weather) until it reaches the ideal 10.5% moisture level.
Prosper is one of the Coffee Scouts working alongside the coffee farming families on Mikuba hill, teaching them how to take care of their coffee trees and produce quality coffee.
He has been empowering farmers with sustainable farming practices, helping them to understand the importance of planting shade trees, green manures and to seasonally mulch their land and prune the coffee trees. During coffee harvest, he stands side by side with farmers, guiding them through the cherry-picking process.
He has also taught farmers how to spot and catch antestia bugs, the colorful bugs thought to be behind the potato taste defect.