Kayon Mountain farm is located in the southern Guji zone of Shakiso. The people are known as Gujii Oromo, and coffee farming has been a core part of the culture in the highland areas. It's a distinct coffee from Yirga Cheffe, and Sidamo. Geographically, culturally, and in terms of cup flavors, these southern coffees have a different flavor profile while maintaining the same general characteristics; citrus and floral accents, a lively cup character. Kayon Mountain farm is family owned and operated, which allows them to sell their coffee "direct". Most small farmers obtained their trees from the Ethiopian government, and therefore have to be sold and traded through the heavily regulated Ethiopia Commodities Exchange (unless they are members of a cooperative, but that's another storey). Kayon Mountain farm have built out their own wet and dry milling facilities, handling all post-harvest milling themselves, overseeing quality management, and preparation for export. Like most of the country, the farm is planted in regional, distinct local strains of coffees that have spread from the wild forest plants of western Ethiopia, to Harar in the East and to the southern districts like Guji. This particular lot was wet-processed, meaning that after the cherry is removed from the seed, the sticky mucilage layer that surrounds the bean is removed after fermenting for 24-36 hours in water (this varies from region to region), before then being removed and laid out to dry on raised drying tables. We also have a dry-processed (or "natural") lot from this farm, where the whole cherry is simply laid out to dry for about 1 month after being harvested. Though they both share similar floral and tea-like characteristics, the resulting cup profiles are very different. Try them both and find out for yourself! You can hop over the the dry-processed review HERE.
Grinding the coffee, you're greeted with a clean sugar in the raw sweetness, and smells I think "hallmark" of a nice Guji coffee: jasmine florals, Earl Grey tea, and honey. The wet aroma has a beautiful floral note that sits way out front, and breaking through the crust reveals compact honey smell, and is underscored by cherry cola-like sweetness. Brewing a City roast provides you with a flavor image of the descriptors laid out in our assessment of smells. The cup is floral, no doubt, and the underlying sweetness is like turbinado sugar, an unrefined sugar with molasses intact, adding that extra retronasal response. As it cools, flavors of honey drizzled dried cherry comes into focus, with a subtle lemon water and clove spice hint. There's a lactic flavor quality too, like lemon custard. Truly a beautiful pour over coffee, with a finish that's refined, and clean. We roasted as dark as Full City, a level I wouldn't personally go beyond. Full City has a nice dark chocolate bar flavor with floral peaking through, like a jasmine-infused cacao bar. Fruited tones come into play, but are much more in the background than the balanced bittersweetness, and subtle citric acidity.