Gatomboya AA shows an array of citrus and dark fruit flavors - pomello, Naval orange, kumquat, plum and blackberry. Acidity is high, a 'grabby' citrus juice with pulp cuts through across the roast spectrum. Brightest cup in the light to middle roast levels. City to Full City. Great Kenya espresso.
Gatomboya is a coffee washing station, a wet mill, a coffee factory. By "factory", it doesn't mean it is industrial, aside from the coffe de-pulping machine. A "factory" is a wet mill where the coop members bring coffee cherry for pulping, fermenting, washing, drying. It's not the factory as we might imagine it. Small washing stations are aligned with a particular "society" which is what they call a cooperative in Kenya. We've had amazing lots of Gatomboya the last few years, which is part of the same cooperative group as Gaturiri: Barichu FCS. We keep returning to the societies who seem to regularly produce some of the best Kenya coffees we see, such as Barichu and Tekangu societies. This coffee was purchased direct, not through the Kenya auction system, so we could avoid the risk of losing it. To do this we pay a price that is higher than what the top auction bid might be, but it means we get the exact lot we want. This year we brought in 46 KG bags as opposed to the vacuum sealed. It gives us more flexibility with the volumes we offer on Shrub, and the quality remains intact with grain-pro just fine.
The dry fragrance of this AA Gatomboya is raisiny-sweet, a solid backing of cinnamon stick and ginger tea. A shade darker produces more of a grape-like fruit tone along with an orange peel and coconut juice note. Grape and orange smells build in the wet aroma, and along with a honey to raw sugar sweetness, makes for a redolent break. Raw cane sugar sweetness and a pulpy citrus flavor are found in the hot cup. The mouthfeel is silky like apple juice, ensuring a lasting impression on the palate. Gatomboya has a well defined, and 'grabby' citric acidity akin to pomelo or Meyer lemon, and it pops at City/City+ roasts. This particular tone is tamed a bit at darker roast levels, but thankfully remains prevalent, far from flattening out altogether. Citrus and dark fruits are prime attributes - ruby red grapefruit, Naval orange, kumquat, plum, dark berry. You're able to develop a surprising amount of cocoa flavors too, like milk chocolate at City+ (more in the background), taking on high % cacao bar as you reach Full City. This makes an absolutely killer SO espresso at Full City and beyond, ristretto shots are quite chocolatey and with much more dominant, distilled citric acidity.