OQ Coffee Co.

Rum-Barrel Conditioned Ethiopia Gelena Abaya

Location: Highland Park, New Jersey

Origin: Kersa district, Oromia region, southern Ethiopia.

Roast: Light

Est. Price: $12.00/8 ounces

Review Date: March 2015

Agtron: 65/85

Aroma: 9

Acidity: 8

Body: 9

Flavor: 9

Aftertaste: 9

Blind Assessment:

The intoxicating spirits-rich aromas of the cask dominate in the nose, but a fine coffee character emerges in the cup to balance and support the casky rum notes with suggestions of dark chocolate, vanilla, raspberry, almond, passion flower. Smooth, rounded acidity; plush, buoyant mouthfeel. Very long, resonantly flavor-saturated finish.


This exceptional coffee was selected as the No. 7 coffee on Coffee Review’s list of the Top 30 Coffees of 2015. This is the first in a series of experiments by OQ involving holding high-quality green coffee in rum barrels to create unusual, in this case striking, rum-influenced profiles. This is a dry-processed or “natural” coffee, meaning the beans were dried inside the fruit rather than after the fruit has been removed, as is the case with wet-processed or “washed” coffees. OQ Coffee is a New Jersey-based small-batch roasting company that emphasizes its commitment to coffee quality and community-building. Visit www.oqcoffee.com for more information.

Who Should Drink It: Grind this coffee and it will fill the house with heady sweet rum aromas, which fatten, complicate and round in the cup with continued intensity but impressive poise and elegance. An unusually explicit and successful experiment with cask-conditioned coffee.

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