Harasi is a coffee from the district adjacent to Ismaili, and in fact they merge to some degree. If you travel west on the road from the capital Sana'a, toward Hodeidah on the Red Sea, you will pass quite close to Harasi, as I did when traveling to Yemen a few years back. I visited an amazing zone within Harasi with towering, ancient stone villages, like castles precariously perched atop steep precipice. It was incredibly dramatic. All the coffee here is grown on terraces, since little land exists that is flat, except for the lowland deserts. The coffee is hauled up remarkably steep slopes, carried in small amounts, most often by donkey. This is an interesting flavor profile for Yemen too (well, they all are...) but very clean, and I fear a bit disappointing for those who want Yemeni coffee to always taste like goat hides. It doesn't, and we won't buy those ratty Yemeni coffees that come from the South. Relative to other Yemeni coffees, this cup is clean, sweetly fruited, and potent.
In comparison to our other Yemeni coffees, Harasi is a nicely centered around sweetness and body. This is not to say that the other coffees are better or worse. Rather, Harasi is unique in it's general uniformity and is not quite as "wild" as some Yemeni's we've had in the past. The sweetness in the dry aroma is rustic, and a lot like the smell of browning caramel on the stove. It has earthy accents too, with a malt note of molasses. Dark roasts show a bit of dark berry, along with the sweet smell of leather. The wet aroma in light roasts is largely comprised of various unrefined sugar smells. There's a strong brown sugar and butter smell as well as a note of stewed fruit in the background. This is a syrupy cup of coffee, and roast level really plays into a varied flavor profile. City+ roasts are creamy, and with Brazil nut and dark chocolate playing large parts. Fruited notes are in there as well, like fruit nectar, some papaya pungency in the nose. As the cup cools, fig and tamarind are present with rhubarb-like acidity. Darker roasts (Full City+ and up) produced dark cacao and aromatic wood. It's still fruited, but flavors of plum, dark berries, and stone fruits tend to take a back seat to brooding chocolate and nut flavors. This viscous coffee will also make an excellent and wild shot of espresso. Whether cup or SO espresso, like all Yemeni coffee, Harasi greatly benefits from a few days rest. 48 hours is great but we found 72 hours to be best, and is definitely the case for espresso.