Theodore’s Coffee Roasters Ethiopia Aleta Wondo

posted in: 2017, reviews | 0

We’ve been globetrotting all over the world with the last couple weeks’ of coffees and this morning finds us back in Ethiopia, by way of Owosso, Michigan! Today I’m drinking Theodore’s Coffee Roasters’ Aleta Wondo, a washed Ethiopian coffee that, if Theodore’s roasting theme continues, is sure to be awesome. Let’s drink!

Theodore’s Coffee Roasters

Theodore’s Ethiopian selections page (This one just sold out! They have several others in stock and a couple more on the way)


Theodore’s has been hooking me up over the last few months and I really love their roasting style… Every coffee has maximal sweetness, great development, clear, defined flavors and I haven’t had a bad coffee in the bunch! I can’t wait to see how that applies to this washed Ethiopian coffee. Aleta Wondo is a woreda (basically like a county, here in the USA) in the Sidama region of southern Ethiopia. Altitudes are really high in this part of Ethiopia and a lot of the coffee there grows at 2,000+ meters above sea level. Theodore’s gives us tasting notes of, “Caramel, exotic jasmine, pineapple, black tea, grapefruit, cherry juice and lemon zest” for this coffee and it sounds amazing.

I used my usual pourover setup for this coffee, using a 1:16 ratio of 28g of coffee to 450g of water in a notNeutral Gino dripper. This is a really dense coffee and I used my usual 3 setting on the Handground grinder but you could open up the grind to keep the water moving a little more through the grounds bed. That being said, a somewhat slower drip didn’t seem to hurt this coffee at all. I brewed with Third Wave Water, which is pretty much the best stuff on Earth!

Right out from under the brewer I am getting a very familiar fruit note in the aroma from this cup that is a little difficult for me to place, but I think reminds me of stewed/cooked plums. As the cup cools the aroma takes on some more floral notes, though. Those florals certainly carry over into the flavor of this coffee, too. There is honey-like sweetness here along with those floral undertones and I’m also getting some sweet lime notes in the sips I’m taking from a warmer cup. This is a really beautiful cup at this temperature! As the cup cools it gets even sweeter and the floral notes are even more obvious. This “feels” like a light coffee, but there isn’t a lot of overt acidity, either, so I guess that means the sweet notes are not a “heavy” sweetness like they usually are. Hopefully that makes as much sense to you as it does to me! LOL

There’s a definite pineapple character to this coffee as it cools down… both sweet and fruity as well as a hint of tartness that I’d associate with the fruit, too. I get less lime in this temperature range and more of a lemon candy acidity, although, again, for a washed Ethiopian coffee from this region the acidity plays less of a role than a lot of other similar coffees I’ve had. I get some black tea notes in the second half of the sip and even a little peach in there, too. Even with all this sweetness and so much fruitiness going on in this cup I still call this a delicate coffee. The flavors are clean and structured, but nothing reaches out and grabs me like some coffees do. I really like that about this cup. It’s soft and delicate and yet has a lot of complexity going on.

I absolutely love this coffee. All the flavors are just perfect, it’s light and bright and yet there is a lot of sweetness in the cup that gives it some gravitas. It is perfectly balanced, delicious, inviting, but there’s also enough complexity to keep the drinker’s interest. This is a fantastic representation of a washed Ethiopian coffee and it’s easily one of the top washed Ethiopian coffees I’ve had in recent memory. Absolutely delicious!