For this week’s review we’ve ventured back to where it all began – Ethiopia – the birthplace of coffee. The vast majority of coffee grown in Ethiopia is heirloom variety. Due to government control over coffee exportation in Ethiopia, we find it very hard (if not impossible) to trace lots back to a specific farm or farmer like we can with our Central American’s for example. Nevertheless, we are continually blown away by the quality of coffee we are buying from Ethiopia as the pickers and growers gain greater awareness of what the specialty industry are demanding in a coffee.


COFFEE – Ethiopian Yirgacheffe Aricha Grade 1 (Natural)

VARIETAL – Mixed Heirloom


The “Natural” (also called “Dry” or “Sundried”) process is the original method use to process coffee. It refers to how the coffee is treated after picking and before being packed into jute sacks for export. As the name suggests, after the cherries are picked off the trees they are left to dry in the sun for a specified period of time. The most common way to dry the cherry is to spread it out evenly over a patio or a raised drying bed, thereby allowing for maximum exposure to the sun during the day. The coffee beans are left inside of the cherry and mucilage for the entirety of the drying process allowing for natural fermentation to occur. This plays a big part in the final flavour profile of the coffee. Once the coffee is sufficiently dried it is then hulled (removal of the cherry) and ready for bagging.

This process gives us a very distinct flavour profile – some people love it, some people hate it. There’s no real fence sitters on this one. Typically, a naturally processed coffee delivers a low acidity, a heavy mouthfeel, and a wide array of exotic fruit flavours with a distinctive “funkiness” about them.


REVIEWED BY – Annie, Thanh and Jimmy

BREW METHOD – Espresso

AGGEGATE BREW RATIO – 22g dry grounds in / 39g liquid espresso out (double shot)


There was definitely no fence sitters for this coffee! Two of us liked it, and one of us, well, not so much… We usually recommend drinking most African coffee’s black in order to appreciate their wide array of flavours, but we whacked some milk into this one too for interests sake

BLACK – A real typical Yirg natural! Floral, sweet lychee, jack fruit acidity, blueberry, slightly earthy. A lasting sweetness

MILK – Very easy to drink, but not overly strong. Sweet caramels and cocoa coming through. We all agreed that this one should be consumed black though


This coffee is available to purchase in store for $15 per 250g. Please email if you wish to order in advance



We though we’d follow up last weeks review of the Yellow Honey Villa Sarchi with another Honey Process Coffee. It was great to compare and contrast!


COFFEE – Costa Rica La Pastora (2014 Crop)

PRODUCER – Mainor Esquival

VARIETAL – Catuai, Caturra (Black Honey Preparation)

ALTITUDE – 1800 – 2000 masl


Honey process is currently all the rage in Costa Rica. The mucilage inside the coffee cherry is sticky and slimy, so it is sometimes called “honey”. During the Honey Process, coffee is dried with some or all of the mucilage remaining on the parchment encasing the seed. At the farm, the degree of mucilage on the cherry is expressed as a percentage – usually between 40%-100%. Coffee cherries are picked, sorted, depulped, and then moved to drying patios or beds for various periods of time. Coffee’s processed using the Honey method will typically exhibit a higher acidity than Pulped Natural coffee’s which don’t experience a ferment whilst drying, but a lower acidity than Washed and Naturally processed coffee’s which go through a controlled ferment and a full ferment respectively.

Specifically, Black Honey processed coffee’s are exposed to the least amount of sunlight (or, the longest time in the shade) throughout the drying process, thereby taking the longest amount of time to dry out to the desired moisture content within the bean. With controlled sunlight focussed on specific areas of the drying patio’s (for anywhere up to 2 weeks in total) the honey (mucilage) actually darkens in colour significantly. Hence “Black Honey”


REVIEWED BY – Aaron, Annie and Thanh

BREW METHOD – Espresso

AGGREGATE BREW RATIO – 24g Dry Grounds in/ 38g Liquid Espresso out (Double Shot)


It’s pretty safe to say that all of us loved this coffee.  The overall preference was enjoying it as straight espresso, but that’s definitely not to say that it was not appealing through milk

BLACK: There’s a gorgeous acidity with this guy! Think citrus, grapefruit zest, apricot and juicy melon. So, so juicy! On the finish we’re greeted with a dark fruit cake/red currant quality

MILK: The citrus notes dissapear here, but instead we’re greeted with burnt caramel, choc hazelnuts and toffee. Not an overally strong milk coffee, but oh so sweet and easy to drink!


This coffee is available to purchase in store for $17 per 250g. This coffee is in limited stock (we’re too busy drinking it ourselves) so please email if you wish to order in advance and avoid disappointment