Zambia is not a coffee growing country we see many samples from. There is plenty of coffee being exported from the region, but their coffee-growing history is much younger than those that surround them. The first coffee was planted in Zambia in the 1950s, however, it wasn't until the last few decades that it became a major contributor to Zambia's agri-business sector. "Kasama Estate" is actually a blend of the coffees from two different estates in Kasama town, Northern Province. Estates and "plantations" make up the bulk of coffees that are exported from Zambia, and there are about 2500 hectares of land between these two, with nearly 800 planted in coffee. Altitude ranges from 1300 to 1500 meters above sea level. This lot is a AAA, which refers to the largest screen size, 16+ microns in this case. Screen size does not necessarily differentiate quality (as we see with AA, and AB lots in Kenya), but the bean size is quite uniform, and so even roasting tends to be more easily achieved.
The dry fragrance has green herbal hints, sweet tobacco, and hazelnut-like nutty sweetness. A unique set of scents, and with sweetness that builds after adding hot water. Pumpkin pie filling (brown sugar, cooked pumpkin, and nutmeg to put a fine point on it), burned caramel, bean pie, fresh cedar: this is not a 'conventional' smelling coffee to say the least. The cup follows suit, with an array of fresh herbal tones dotting a thick base sweetness of pungent molasses. I find the green herbal aspect quite appealing in this context. Flavors run parallel with many wet-hulled coffees from Indonesia, pipe tobacco leaves, malt syrups, rustic earth tones, and cooked rhubarb come to mind. It's a big bodied coffee, even at City roast level (which is quite impressive), and bittersweet cocoa notes are carried long into the finish. While I prefer City+/FC level, this coffee can definitely handle roast as well, and so a good option for those who like to bring out a little oil to the surface.