The Mutovu coffee station was established as a in 2012 in Nyamasheke area of Western Rwanda. It is in an ideal area for growing coffee with rich soils, and with so many small holder coffee farmers, it’s also a central location for a coffee washing station. The wet mill isits at 1800 meters, with coffee being grown in the area up to 1950 meters. Mutovu Coffee is fairly small compared to many of the other coops and washing stations we buy from, estimated output this year at 2 containers of coffee (roughly 85,000 lbs of milled coffee – twice the amount from when they started). Each farmer supplies their own cherries to the station, as well as collects cherries from their neighbors. We have been buying Mutovu every year since they were established, as well as visiting the coop on every trip to Rwanda we make. Each year we’re seeing improvements at the mill, last year’s included upgraded milling equipment, new drying beds and a brand new warehouse to better store their parchment coffee. They received CAFE Practices certification too, part of which which means they are separating process batches by day of delivery.
Mutovu is a fragrant coffee, the dry grounds alluding to honey and raw sugars sweetness in light roasts, with hints of dried peach. The wet aroma of City and City+ roasts are so sweet, a culmination of smells that remind me of fresh baked ginger-molasses cookies, along with a more delicate honey floral note. Mutovu is always such a delicious brew, rounded on the palate at a range of roast levels, and with delicate top notes that have deemed it a top shelf coffee around here. The sweetness is aromatic, even floral in the sense that it alludes to the retronasal aspects of honey and fragrant raw sugars. It has pleasant, fruited brightness too, like orange, giving way to fruited top note hints of lemon and peach. As you move through the cooling cup, you’re rewarded with accents of baking spice, vanilla caramels, and a tannic hint of black tea. My favorite roasts were on the lighter side, City/City+, but Full City still packs hefty sweetness ala burned toffee and a bittersweet flavor of dark chocolate bar. An overall fantastic brewed coffee at a wide roast range that will bode well in many different brew applications too.