Clifton Coffee Roasters | Single Origin | Christmas Coffee | Uganda

Christmas Coffee

Uganda – RWENZORI DONKEY LOT

Tasting notes

MINCE PIE / MULLED WINE / STOLLEN

Body

5/5

Sweetness

5/5

Acidity

4/5

Clear

PRODUCT INFO

Region

Kasese, Rwenzori, Western Uganda

FARM NAME

Kisinga Coffee Station

Producer

Smallholders

Altitude

1100 - 2200 MASL

Process

Natural (18-21 days on raised beds)

Variety

SL14, SL28

DESCRIPTION

Take a moment, wrap up warm and indulge with a Christmas brew. This year’s Christmas Coffee is about harmony, balance & festive flavours. This holiday season will be different to most, the covid-19 impacts will have been felt by everyone. We want you to take some time out, pause, relax and enjoy a warm mug of coffee that is packed with Christmas flavour.
This year our coffee comes from the Kisinga Washing Station. Many coffee farmers live high up on the slopes of the Rwenzori mountain range, which culminates at more than 5,000 M.A.S.L. The higher the coffee grows, the more slowly it matures and the more complex the cup profiles are. The cherries are kept separate and assembled in “Donkey Lots”, which is how the coffee is transported to the washing station, celebrate the uniqueness and exclusivity of the cherries. At Kisinga the coffee was dried on raised African beds for 18-21 days before being milled and prepared for export.

RWENZORI MOUNTAINS
The magnificent Rwenzori Mountains, famously known as the ‘Mountains of the Moon’, stretch for 120km along Western Uganda and are home to the Bakonzo tribe. The high altitude, fertile soils and plentiful rainfall provide perfect conditions for growing coffee trees beans, while the pristine snow-capped peaks and the glaciers give rise to many rivers.
The Rwenzori region has a long coffee tradition. With on average 2 acres, Bakonzo farmers work manually, with the help of the whole family, and traditionally group together to process the cherries. Coffee is a source of incomes that allows them to support their families and improve their homes. While farmers traditionally sell parchments and kibokos (dried cherries), more and more choose to sell the freshly picked red cherries to washing-stations. This enables farmers to access quick payment for coffee and takes away the risk of drying coffee for the farmer, many of whom are not well equipped to dry coffee.
Kyagalanyi Coffee Limited, and its partner in Rwenzori, Agri Evolve Ltd., are operating two washing stations in Kasese, in the heart of Rwenzori. While the Rwenzori’s are known for producing almost exclusively Naturals (95%), the washing stations produce fully-washed, honey and also experiment with Pura Cepa fermentations.

KISINGA & BUGOYE WASHING STATIONS
Located 25km southwest of Kasese, in the Kisinga Trading Center, Kisinga Coffee Station was built in 2015 with one purpose: explore the full potential of Rwenzori’s arabica coffee, and support farmers improving their yields, their profits and subsequently their living conditions.
In response to the growing number of farmers delivering their cherries to the washing station, Agri Evolve and Kyagalanyi built a second washing station in 2019, in Bugoye, north of the Kasese district.
Instead of just focusing on the processing of the cherries, Jonny from Agri Evolve and his team mobilised the whole community to take a vested interest in coffee production: from empowering farmers in the care of the coffee trees – with the implementation of the Volcafe Way program – to the importance of picking only red cherries, or implementing basics social benefits helping the workers in the long-run. Employees of Agri Evolve benefit from health insurance, a pension plan and receive their wages on a bank account (this practice – which helps to build up savings – is not common in Uganda)

The success of the project relies on the deep-rooted commitment to economic sustainability with a clear commercial view, not just a charitable one. As Jonny says: “The best way to help the community is to buy their coffee!”

THE DONKEY LOTS
Many coffee farmers live high up on the slopes of the Rwenzori mountain range, which culminates at more than 5,000 M.A.S.L. The higher the coffee grows, the more slowly it matures and the more complex the cup profiles are. To access the farms situated up the mountains off the beaten tracks, Agri Evolve has invested in donkeys which collect the ripe cherries of the farms located in remote areas. The cherries are kept separate and assembled in “Donkey Lots”, which celebrate the uniqueness and exclusivity of the coffee cherries.

DELIVERY

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