This month’s coffee is an award winning Rwandan, sourced and roasted by Patrik Rolf of April Coffee, Copenhagen, Denmark. It’s crispy, juicy, stone-fruity, and ultra clean; just what we want from Rwanda!
About the coffee:
Farmers: 489 member farmers, 1,590 non-members
Lot Name/Number: RWC41
Harvest Season: May 2016
Plant Varietal: Red Bourbon
Coffee Type: Fully Washed
Coffee Grade: Specialty grade
Screen Size: 16+
Farm location and other characteristics:
Province: Southern Province
Growing Altitude: Between 1700m and 2000m
Avg. Annual Rainfall: 1300mm
Soil Type: Sand and clay
Processing Method: Wet Process
Any unripe cherries were discarded, with only ripe cherries remaining. These were place in a flotation tank to ensure damaged beans were separated from good cherries. The cherries were then placed through a disc pulper with the remaining mucilage removed via dry fermentation and intermediate washing for 9 hours, then soaked for an additional 24 hours. This resulted in an A1 parchment grade.
The coffee was spread well on drying tables out of exposure to sunlight, for the first 24 hours. During this process the coffee was inspected and any defects discarded. The coffee was then moved to raised beds out in direct sunlight, for two and a half weeks. At 12% humidity the parchment was packed into sacks and stored for three weeks in the Remera warehouse 15cm above ground then 15cm above concrete. The coffee was then sent to Kingali for milling and export.
This coffee was sourced via 32 Cup. They provide an incredible stack of information about this coffee here:
Bottom line, Epiphanie Mukashyaka and Bufcoffee have done a tremendous amount for the Rwandan coffee scene, women within the industry, and specialty coffee in general. Coffee from here is regularly seen in the Rwandan Cup of Excellence competitions, with the wash station internationally recognised on the international specialty coffee market as being of the highest quality.
Patrik Rolf Karlsson is the owner of April Coffee Roasters in Copenhagen. At April, Patrik says he can “explore the path I want to explore — and no one is restricting me in that … I expect a lot from April in the future.”
And he’s not aiming low; his ambition being “to progress the way we roast coffee” within the specialty coffee industry. He’s already started in a progressive manner, roasting for both filter and espresso using profiles tailored towards being drunk either black or with milk.
While roasting is the core of Patrik’s business, it’s structured in a way that holds seasonality and sustainability as core principles. These may sound like buzzwords to some people, but it shows clearly with Patrik that he’s thought deeply on these subjects. With roasting he displays a hunger for advancing knowledge along with continuous learning. With sustainability he takes a two-pronged approach from both ends of the value chain, sticking to a “one shop for one city” concept and supporting that shop with a reciprocal “you help us, we’ll help you” attitude. Sourcing green beans Patrik sticks to one green coffee company to supply him while working with farmers right from the start, showing a pragmatic outlook on the inherently complicated realities of life at origin.
April is an exciting company. Patrik has a vision he is chasing honestly and methodically, pushing boundaries along the way. You can see why we like him 😉
Roasting profile and notes by Patrik:
“How I roast is determined by a few simple factors that starts with the green coffee. I look for 1) moisture content, 2) density and 3) surface area. Based on these three variable I make a roasting decision that correlates with the Loring Falcon 15kg system that I roast with.
It is an air roaster so I need to roast fast. “Too much air” has a tendency to dry out the coffee therefore I work with a lot faster profiles than I would on a drum roaster with “flexible air flow settings”. This roast ends up at 9:10 in total roast time with an end temperature of 203’C.
This coffee absorbs less energy and therefore needs more energy. I try to be flexible in how I approach each coffee I roast so no “energy distribution is the same”. That being said on this coffee I am working with a maximum GAS% right after the top of the RoR. In this case it enchans flavour clarity (higher average RoR over the total roast time, much higher than if I would start with maximum GAS% from the beginning of the roast) and makes for a more evenly developed coffee.
I always aim for clarity and diversity in taste when I roast and the my key indicators that I work with are Start RoR, Top RoR, Crack RoR and End RoR. I believe that the constellation of these four values as well as a consistent in between batch protocol is the key to most things when it comes to understanding how you can effect the coffee with your roasting.”
Brewing Notes From Matt:
This coffee is definitely a Nordic style roast. It’s light and citrusy. Most of the time this means you really need to squeeze the coffee over a long brew time to get all the flavour out. Luckily Patrik has developed the coffee really well, so instead of trying to find a window where the coffee tastes good we can instead play around to find the spot where we like it most.
To get a nice cross section of brew time and flavour I made 4 cupping bowls brewed to different times and decanted them through a batch brew paper. This gives us a solid idea of flavour vs contact time. I used a pour over grind size so the results are quite applicable to drip methods as well.
The bowls were decanted at 1:30, 2:30, 3:30, 4:30 and finished pouring through 30 seconds afterwards. Brewing ratio was 1:14.5 (69g/L) and water was boiling.
Water spec was the classic Barista Hustle water recipe a lot of you have been rocking and sending me photos of! Awesome! Here it is again:
- Add 8.6g bicarb, and 25g epsom to 500g distilled water. This is your concentrate.
- Shake the concentrate and make sure it’s all dissolved. Might need a few hours or higher temp to fully dissolve.
- Add 2g of the concentrate to 500g distilled water. This is your brewing water.
- Boil and brew!
- Save the concentrate for future brews!
The Barista Hustle Superlatives subscription is a monthly delivery of beautiful, special, and interesting coffees from roasters and farms all over the world.
We package up the coffee into small 70-100g bags (depending on cost, rarity, and supply) and send it to 800+ subscribers in over 40 countries.
No shipping costs, just delicious coffee every month, straight to your letterbox.
Learn about past Superlatives here.