Coffee: Uganda Ekende Rqenzori Natural
Roast Recommendation: Medium to Medium Dark Roast
Cupping Profile: Strawberry, watermelon, chocolate, almond butter, pine, sweet tobacco, heavy body, mellow acidity
Espresso Profile: Dark chocolate, citrus, blackberry, almond butter, tobacco, heavy body
Main Producing Region: Mount Elgon, West Nile and Rwenzori Mountains
Processing Methods: Natural Process and washed process
Genetic Varieties: Typica, Kent, SL28
Coffee accounts for 20 – 30% of Uganda’s foreign exchange earnings each year, and more than 3.5 million families work in coffee-related activities. The bulk of the country’s coffee is produced by smallholder farmers working plots of less than 2.5 hectares.
Today Uganda is gaining increasing recognition for the quality of its arabicas. Arabica is grown primarily on the eastern and western borders of the country. In the east, coffee is produced around the Mount Elgon volcano, and the washed coffees produced there are often exported under the Bugisu (or Bugishu) name. In the Rwenzori mountains of Western Uganda, natural processing is the standard method, and the low-grade commercial product resulting from strip picking and high defect counts is known as DRUGAR (dried Uganda Arabica).
In recent years a great push has been made by growers – particularly in the West – who understood that they had the soil, the elevation, the climate and the genetic stock–to create an outstanding coffee. The results of this new focus on careful harvesting and meticulous processing have been excellent.
The “Ekende” profile was born from a desire to find a consistent, natural-processed East African coffee with a combination of jammy fruit, chocolate, and heavy body. This flavor profile has become increasingly difficult to find from other sources, but after a number of years of trials, the coffee sourcer zeroed in on coffees from Western Uganda.
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