August's Blend: Ethiopia - Giving Tree
Chire Washing Station
The Chire Washing Station processes coffee cherries from over 650 local small farmers annually, providing an avenue for rural farms to get their crops to a larger market. The station is located in the in the village of Balo in the Sidamo region, which is known for producing particularly fruity coffees.
The Ethiopian Commodity Exchange gives farmers access to a price-protected market, but it kept the origin completely hidden from buyers (like us). Thanks to the pleading of the specialty coffee community, the ECX now allows us to know the processing station, but, sadly, not the exact farmer.
The Ethiopian coffee landscape is the most diverse in the world. There are thousands of wild and undocumented heirloom coffee plant varieties in Ethiopia - including the plant that these coffee beans were hand-picked from.
Chances are, this genetic variety has been growing on its own for hundreds, if not thousands, of years. It could be all over Ethiopia - or it could just be on a single farmer’s land. The mystery only adds to the experience.
Known as the birthplace of coffee, Ethiopia’s natural coffee forests produce the most diverse and fascinating coffees in the world. Over one quarter of the nation’s population works in the nation’s coffee industry.
Ethiopia’s famous “coffee ceremony” involves the senior woman of the household roasting green beans in a pan, grinding them shortly after, and brewing a large pot of coffee for the family and visiting friends. The hour-long process is a testament to Ethiopia's cultural devotion to great hospitality.