Tinker Coffee Co. Kenya Gikira AA

posted in: 2017, reviews | 0

The clocks have rolled back and everything is a little “off” this Monday morning, but a nice Gikira Estate coffee from Kenya, roasted by Tinker Coffee Co. in Indianapolis, IN, is going to get us upright and back on track! Keep drinking!

Tinker Coffee Co.

Purchase this coffee directly for $17/12oz (also available as $6/4oz or $113/5lb)


Tinker Coffee Co. is a roastery located in Indianapolis, Indiana. Founded in 2014 by Steve Hall and Jeff Johnson, Tinker has a fantastic reputation and while they don’t have a cafe, a lot of locals carry their coffee, they offer online sales and you can drop by pretty much anytime during the week to say hi and buy coffee straight out of the roastery. I’ve been drinking Tinker’s coffee for the last 2.5 years and it never disappoints!

This morning’s coffee is Tinker’s Gikira AA, a washed coffee from the Nyeri region of Kenya. Gikira is part of the Othaya Farmers Cooperative Society, which owns 20 wet mills and takes in a lot of the coffee from the area around the town of Othaya for collection, washing and further processing. The Othaya society was founded in 1956 with 250 members and consists of over 15,000 members today! In Kenya, coffee is sorted by size, with AA being the largest, followed by AB, and so on. This selection is an AA, with large, uniformly sized coffee beans that are as nice to look at as they are drink! Gikira Estate grows SL-28, SL-34 and Ruiru 11 varieties, the classics of the Kenyan coffee industry, and elevation exceeds 1800masl. Tinker gives us tasting notes of, “wild raspberry, gingerbread and orange candy” for this coffee.

I used my standard pourover method, a 1:16 ratio of 28g of coffee to 450g of water in a notNeutral Gino dripper. Handground grinder was set to 3 and I use Third Wave Water in all my brewing. This produced a medium to medium-heavy cup with a smooth, but very vibrant mouthfeel. This is a Kenyan coffee, all the way! It’s punchy and bright and not afraid to get in your face a little bit! On the front end of the sip is a big, sweet, bright citrus note that has lots of orange juice but also some classic Kenyan pink grapefruit notes, especially as the cup cools. I am getting a fair amount of pineapple in all that fruitiness, too, along with its sweetness and the hint of tartness that usually comes with pineapple. These are definitely bright flavors and this is an acid-forward coffee, for sure, but there is plenty of sweetness in this cup, with almost a brown sugar vibe for me. The sweetness is sugary and a bit “rustic” for me, like an unrefined/less refined sugar and it does give lots of balance to this coffee. Pineapple and orange juice really both jump out at me, especially in the cooling cup.

Small sips of this coffee seem to really bring out the bright notes, especially the pineapple, while larger sips are a bit sweeter and darker in character. Size of sip, oddly enough, often changes the flavors I get from a coffee, but that is particularly true for this one. All in all, this is a rock-solid Kenyan coffee with beautiful flavors and that classic brightness with a different take on the flavors that make up that acidity. Very tasty!