One more terrific, full-bore Kenya. The rich, winy acidity carries us up and out, expanding the boundaries of the profile and revealing the usual mouth-filling resonance at the heart of the coffee.
By Kenneth Davids
March 1st, 1997
For a Kenya, displays a relatively restrained acidity. In another coffee this gentleness might be a fault, but here it reads as understatement, a polite permission for the complexity and echoing dimension of the coffee to emerge without getting upstaged by acidy dramatics.
Floral and vanilla tones hover in the high-toned acidity, exciting without distracting. The acidity is authoritative despite its floral delicacy and the body surprisingly substantial, although the entire profile loses momentum in the finish.
Another flower-laced Yirgacheffe, shimmering with rose and lavender notes. Enough acidity to sustain the fruit and flower innuendoes, but rather light-bodied. Some carbon thinness seems to emerge as the coffee cools. Depending on whether you find the very pronounced flower tones a delight or a distraction, this coffee could merit anywhere from an 80 to a 100. I (roughly) split the difference.
The only Zimbabwe in the cupping. Lighter and drier than the best Kenya, with less dimension in the cup and a somewhat more attenuated finish. The pleasure is in the superb top of this coffee, both aroma and acidity levitating with dry fruit and cinnamon tones.
The Kenya wine tones are lighter here, more Bordeaux than Burgundy. The profile is also simpler than in many Kenyas, but the high, singing tones of the acidity please until the aftertaste, when they turn slightly astringent.
Some wine tones survive the dark roast to complicate the acidity. Brought along to a dark roast slowly enough to spare us burned notes, but for a Kenya not a lot of body or dimension either. The pleasure would seem to be the paradox of understated acidity and dark-roast pungency.
Impressive complexity for such a dark-roasted coffee. Prune and vanilla tones grace the aroma, while a fruit-nuanced acidity dominates in the cup. As the coffee cools suggestions of ferment surface in the fruity acidity.