Kiambu Ndumberi is a sweet coffee, brown sugar and caramel, which mix nicely with flavors of citrus juice. It's a fairly bodied cup, and the acidity while citric, is well-integrated and not overbearing. Full City roasts tone down citric aspects even more and introduce bittersweet cacao notes. City to Full City. Single Origin Espresso.
Karinga wet mill is located near Gatundu town, in the province of Thika. It's what Kenyans refer to as a "factory" - where coffee cherry is wet processed and dried before being transported to the dry mills for finishing touches. Karinga is part of Gitwe Farmer's Cooperative Society who serves four villages in the area and has built a membership of over 900 producers since beginning in 1983. Karinga is located near the Rwabura river where water is pumped from and held in reservoir tanks for processing coffee cherry. They have a waste water management system of several soaking pits on the factory premises. SL-28 and SL-34 make up about 99% of the coffee grown, with just about 1% Ruiri-11. This is the AB outturn, meaning, all of the beans are 15 - 17 micron screen size. Screen size doesn't necessarily correlate to cup quality, though unfortunately does link to price (AA being the most expensive). All three outturns tasted exceptional, and so with this AB we see an opportunity to offer Shrub customers a really great Kenya at the more middle-range of price.
Grinding this coffee I get what I think to be quintessential "Kenya" characteristics - allusions to grape candy, cardamom and tea (like Russian tea cakes), and depth of sweetness. And while you can't smell acidity, the hints of orange peel sure make it seem like you can! Adding hot water builds on these aspects, and the smell in the steam is quite "exotic". We roasted two batches for the review - one to City and the other just North of Full City. Both roasts are delicious brewed, and while quite different, the acidity shines like citrus juice even at the deeper roast levels. City roast flavors are centered around citrus and brown sugar notes, like fresh squeezed pink grapefruit, and tangelo. Acidity is high at this roast level, and the finish is clean and sweet, with complex spices and tea notes filling out the aftertaste. Edging toward Full City sees the profile shift toward a tart/sweet pomegranate flavor, ripe Naval orange, and a flavor of fine Dutch drinking cocoa completing the picture. The liquor weighs heavy on the palate, especially for Kenya, and lends to a long lasting finish.