The Nyarubuye washing station site is located in Karongi, near the Nyarabuye National Forest. It’s not far from other stations we buy from and as a newly built site, this is the first year we’ve had the opportunity to buy their coffee. Altitude at the station is near 2000 meters, and the farmers in the surrounding growing areas have coffee planted much higher. Like much of Rwanda, the coffee is Bourbon, and the station employs double fermentation, which lends to this fairly refined cup. The coffee is hand sorted all along the way too – starting with whole cherry, then wet parchment where certain defects are easiest to spot, then the dry parchment – which also helps to produce an amazingly consistent coffee from one cup to the next.
The dry fragrance of Nyarubuye Station has dark brown cane sugar sweetness, that when adding hot water culminates in a brown sugar cookie aroma. The coffee exhibits a sound base of dark sugary sweetness from aromatics on into the brewed coffee, one that translates best in middle roasting. My drip roast had a flavor of almond brittle candy (heavier on the toffee than nut), along with a creamy caramel pudding note. Hints of roasted barley and cardamom spice come up after the coffee cools a bit, as well as an aromatic woodiness, but these are more background finishing accents than focal points. Espresso roasts see a balanced interplay of caramel and cocoa powder flavors come together, and are bolstered by weightier body than my lighter roasts. Overall, sweet and bittering coffee flavors are the most balanced in the drip coffee.