This is an immaculately processed Sumatra, the likes of which is not too common. We really enjoy what many would call "clean tasting coffees", but many Sumatran coffees can be very funky due to processing methods and conditions. However, this one is delightfully sparkling with soft elements classic Sumatran character of chocolate, slight earthiness, and hints of cedar but is balanced by bright berry flavors that keep it exciting. The roast level is just a bit darker into the medium range but short of muting any of the vibrant character this coffee holds.
This pristine, classic Sumatra comes to us from a community of about fifteen hundred farming families located in the regency of Bener Meriah on the Indonesian island. Their coffee is collected by the Sengijo Mill, owned by Mr. Hasballah Yunus, who has provided our sourcing partner Royal Coffee with coffee since the 1980s.
Bener Meriah is located within the wider region of Aceh, sometimes referred to as Gayo or Gayoland in reference to the local Gayonese ethnic majority. Wet hulling coffee in parchment, locally “giling basah” is common practice here. Rather than letting the coffee remain in its outer parchment layer as it dries after depulping, this shell will be hulled while the coffee is still between 20-40% moisture content. The exposed green will then complete drying, imparting unique flavors commonly associated with Indonesian island coffee broadly, and Sumatran coffee specifically.
KSU Gayo Mandiri cooperative was founded in 2008 and currently has 1218 members. On average, producers cultivate coffee on 2.5 acres of land using their own micro-mills to depulp and dry coffee. The cooperative hosts regular trainings on best agricultural practices to assist small producers with their organic certification while improving the quality of their coffee. KSU Gayo Mandiri also invest premiums generated from certifications in roads to help producers overcome problems transporting their coffee. The cooperative also recently purchased an ambulance to improve access to emergency healthcare.