The Table is, as a collective whole, a massive fan of coffee from the Kochere Cooperative; it has seen several of their coffees served upon it over the past couple years. I remain impressed with the care and pride the members take in the cultivation and preparation of their coffees, as it shows beautifully in the cup on a very consistent basis.
Kochere is growing in popularity, showcasing the consistent diversity of Yirgacheffe’s unique terroir.
Close to 100,000 local inhabitants rely on coffee as their main crop with which to feed their families. Of those 100,000 residents, the Kochere Cooperative consists of about 500 smallholder farmers who use shared wet mills to process their coffee, where it is washed and then dried on elevated drying beds.
The Kochere micro-region has long been known as one of the best origins for fully washed southern Ethiopian coffees. So much so, in fact, that now, about thirty percent of all coffee bearing the Yirgacheffe name comes from this specific area. The combination of very high altitude and iron-rich, acidic soil creates the ideal growing situation to produce the bright, floral Yirgacheffe profile.
Welcome to my Table, here in the corner of this cafe. Today we’re sipping a cup of Ethiopia Kochere, from Headstash Roasting Company in Evanston, Illinois. Feel free to pull up a chair.
region: Yirgacheffe, Ethiopia
farm: Kochere Washing Station
producer: smallholder farmers
association: Kochere Coffee Cooperative
elevation: 1875 – 2050 meters above sea level
cultivars: Ethiopia Heirloom
process: fully washed, raised bed dried
The aroma of this Ethiopia Kochere is heavy, but fragrant and perfumed with scents of honey, bright berries, wine, and flowers.
The first few sips of the coffee are, quite frankly, a bit volatile. It’s a hugely full-bodied coffee, dense and viscous with a jelly syrupy mouthfeel that is reminiscent of black currants and boysenberry jam; there is also a spread of fermented raw honey that reveals itself in the finish. There is, though, just a touch of roast that contributes to a little staleness.
As it cools off, the coffee gets much brighter and livelier with lots of fruits, sweet and tart, coming forward. Really juicy plum wine, apricot, kumquat, cantaloupe, kiwi, and peach preserves lead the charge, which lead to a flutter of violet petals and a dusting of crushed walnuts in the finish.
Full body; jelly mouthfeel; plum acidity; clean finish.
THE BOTTOM LINE:
The Ethiopia Kochere, from Headstash Roasting Company, was a really interesting take on what is quickly becoming a classic. Nearly all of the Kocheres I’ve tried were light and floral, bright and zesty and citrusy.
This one, though, was rich, dense, and full-bodied; lots of bright, juicy, and heavy berries and stone fruits mingle together to create a heavy, but vibrant, texture. However, there’s a touch of roast and nuttiness to the cup that makes for just a touch of astringency in the back and its winy flavors contribute to a taste of fermentation.
Overall, though, this was a good cup and an enjoyable coffee experience.
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Andrew is a husband, father, dog lover, craft beverage enthusiast, content creator, and niche market Internet celebrity. Formerly of A Table in the Corner of the Cafe and The Pulitzer Project and contributor to Barista Magazine and Mental Floss, he’s been writing on the Internet for years.