Tambaya is one of the coffee Factories (wet-mills that are organized as cooperatives) within the Rumukia Coffee Farmer Society in Karatina area of Nyeri. Tambaya is close to Mukurwe-ini, and was formerly part of this society until it fell apart in the '90s. Within the same Rumukia group are some other fantastic farms we have offered in the past: Kiawamururu, Gatura, and Thunguri to name a few. The area of Tambaya is 1550 meter altitude, in the fertile foothills of Mt. Kenya and Aberdare ranges. The Tambaya coop has 1093 members and the average number of coffee trees per member is just 250. Again, in Kenya coffee "societies" the farmer's plots are so small, they are measured in numbers of trees, not in area of land as they are in other coffee origins. But this means that co-ops provide micro-management of every coffee tree by the owner of the land, not by a large-scale agriculture operation like the big estates of Kiambu or Thika. The member farmers have the two preferred coffee varieties under cultivation, SL-28 and SL-34, with the vast majority of trees being SL-28.
Tambaya cups with expressions of fruit and spice from the ground coffee to the long finish. The dry fragrance is loaded with a smell of orange juice and spiced tea. City/City+ roasts harness such a honeyed sweetness that's speckled with cardamom and ginger spice notes. There's an accent of bergamot citrus in the wet aroma, with aspects of rhubarb pie, and pineapple turnover. Breaking the crust releases a pleasing note of dark sugars and pomegranate juice, affording a nice preview to Tambaya's cup profile. For me this coffee's sweet spot is right around City+, where fruit juice flavors and raw sugar sweetness are fully developed, create an extremely tasty brewed coffee. Citrus comes to the forefront of my mind when drinking a pour-over at this roast level, like sweet lemonade, and a touch of fresh pink grapefruit juice. Berry and apple accents are introduced as the cup cools, along with elderberry tea, fruit punch, and tart pomegranate-to-cranberry flavors. The acidity is nothing less than bracing, and of course of a citric variety. This is an AA, so large bean size, and so stretching the roast will help with roast evenness from inside to the outside. Shows really well from City+ to Full City, and the latter make for extremely intense espresso - fruited sweetness with a distilled citrus bite.