Kuma Coffee out of Seattle, Washington have been on my list since I started this blog two years ago and wouldn’t you know it? My fantastic pals at MyCoffeePub.com selected a washed Ethiopian coffee from Kuma for this month’s subscription! This is why I love my MyCoffeePub.com so much! Links are below and let’s check out this coffee!
MY COFFEE PUB 12/16: KUMA COFFEE ETHIOPIA ARBE GONA
Kuma Coffee was founded by roaster, Mark Barany. He traces the company’s start back to 1995 when his family was moved to Kenya for a few years where, among other things, he developed a love for African coffee (not unlike my origin story in coffee, being moved to Italy when I was a kid!). In 1998 he returned to the USA and moved to Seattle, where he worked as a barista. During that time he rescued a shelter dog named Kuma and in 2007 started roasting as a small hobby business. In 2009, Mark found some vintage Probat roasters for sale and went all in on a proper roasting operation and he prides himself on transparency, sourcing and client relationships. Kuma has won Good Food Awards and is a nationally recognized brand.
I received this coffee in December 2016’s My Coffee Pub subscription. This is my favorite thing every month… a shipping envelope shows up and you never know what’s going to be inside until you open it up! It’s always a great surprise and the gentlemen at MyCoffeePub.com have good taste and select nice coffees every month. I’ve been using their service for over a year and it’s great (and, yes, they are advertisers, but I wouldn’t put them on the page if I didn’t think the world of them. I don’t charge them for the ad).
This month the MCP guys selected Kuma’s Arbe Gona, a washed Ethiopian coffee from the Sidama region. As luck would have it, Kuma just sold out of this coffee. It was available on their website just yesterday, still, in fact! Dang! But, good for them! They have a wide selection of African coffees and a few Americans currently, too, so you’ll find something tasty in the rotation now even though this one is gone.
This coffee comes from a private mill in the Aroresa ward and Mark picked it for what he called “sparking clean fruit flavors.” He recommended it both as a filter coffee as well as espresso. I tried it using my standard 1:16 ratio (28g coffee to 450g water) in the notNeutral Gino pourover with a 3.5 Handground grind. I also dusted off my Aeropress while I typed this story and used Brian Beyke’s Stubby recipe. I used a 2.5 grind on the Handground for that. I won’t spend any more time on the Aeropress description because it was just OK. On the Gino the coffee was really excellent, and usually that AP recipe works great for me, so I may need to grind a little finer next time. It was fine, but nothing special and it was pretty dull. Totally the opposite of the pourover!
This was a really delicious pourover! Kuma gave descriptors of, “strawberry, apricot, cherry, lime, jasmine” and I found a lot of those, for sure. It was a clean, structured cup with a soft, mellow lime acidity (“lime” acidity for me is generally a little edgier and sharper) and a nice floral tone in the aroma and sip, especially in the aftertaste. I got more strawberry out of the Aeropress and a little more cherry and tropical vibe from the pourover. There was just a ton of sweetness in the cup, almost downright sugary, and the florals added complexity while the lime added balance. The fruits were subtle and not really in-your-face, which I liked. It made this a delicate, yet assertive cup. I have quite a bit left over so I am going to rip some face melters on the Gaggia and see how they do! LOL A lot of times straight Ethiopian espresso shots are tough to tame on my basic home equipment (i.e. no pressure profiling and stuff like that), but it’s always worth a shot (get it?).
This selection from Kuma made me even more interested in trying even more coffee from them, and as always, I’m already looking forward to January to see what the boys from MyCoffeePub.com come up with next!