A bright cup with flavors of citrus and pomegranate. Acidity is refreshing and vacillates between malic and tartaric. Fruited notes are many (berry, tropical, etc) as well as a complex, layered sugar sweetness. Body is more than 'descent', and this will work well as a wild dual-use coffee. City to Full City+. SO Espresso.
Kiangoi is a "factory," a coffee mill in Kenya terminology, from the Kirinyaga growing district. It is a cooperative coffee, one of the processing stations of the Rung'eto Farmers Cooperative Society. While we like estate coffees, oftentimes the qualities from cooperatives is superior. In a coop, each member is tending to only 200-500 trees on less than a hectare, as opposed to a huge estate that uses agribusiness growing methods. I think it shows in the cup too. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to visit Kiangoi, as it is the second time we have offered this specific coop coffee. I usually head in the direction of Nyeri to visit coops we have worked with more extensively, and Kirinyaga is the opposite way, to the East and away from the Aberdare zone. But we have had so many nice Kirinyaga lots lined up for 2010, I think I must spend more time there! The pictures with this review are SL-28 cultivar, the predominate type in Kirinyaga, which is a Bourbon hybrid from the 1930s developed by Scot Labs, and absolutely the best Kenya cultivar for cup quality. This is a nicely prepared Peaberry lot, as we have seen many mixed with quite a lot of flatbean (not that it matters if the cup is good!)
Aromatically, this coffee has a straight-forward fruitiness that has a clean, spiced characteristic, reminiscent of red tropical punch. There's red berry, pineapple, and passion fruit notes in the dry ground of light roasts. Darker roasts develop more blackberry and blueberry notes along with spice complexity. Hot water brings up a strong smell of molasses sugar, pungent and sweet, along with citrus and a note of vanilla extract (think Orange Julius!). There's a syrupy sweetness found in the crust with a hint of floral tea. Breaking the crust finds lots of dark sugars and maple below. The cup is so sweet and fruited with aspects of tart fruit like pomegranate and pink grapefruit, as well as mingling of red berries and tropical fruits. It's a bright coffee, with a mingling of tartaric and malic acidity. Sweetness runs deep, and flavors of brown sugar and vanilla ride out through the long finish. Darker roasts have muscat grape and more developed sugars like demurara and caramel. There's a nice bittering flavor of citrus zest in the finish too, along with a bit of slight black tea. This Kiangoi PB is a bodied coffee, and will the potent sweetness and fruit juice flavors will make a surprising espresso at Full City and beyond.