This natural processed coffee comes from the Cherecha warden the Wanago district of Yirgacheffe. The coffee is processed at the mill in Wanago then finished at the CPWE dry mill in Addis Ababa.
Welcome to my Table, here in the corner of this cafe. Today we’re sipping the Ethiopia Wanago, from Spotted Cow Coffee Company in Mill Creek, Washington. Feel free to pull up a chair.
region: Cherecha, Wanago, Yirgacheffe, Ethiopia
farm: Wanago Dry Mill
elevation: 1700 meters above sea level
cultivars: Ethiopia Heirloom
method: Kalita Wave
grind: 18, Preciso
coffee: 30 g
water: 450 g
pour: 2:00 concentric, 1:00 drop
The Ethiopia Wanago’s aroma profile is that of the classic natural Yirg, with them big ol’ berries booming out of the cup. While a lot of those classic natural Yirg aroma profiles can be pretty blueberry-heavy, though, the Wanago is pretty dominantly red with a touch of blue: strawberry, raspberry, blueberry, blackberry (in order of intensity), all followed up with a bouquet of floral aromatics.
Taking my first few sips of the coffee I can’t say I’m surprised by what it’s presenting my palate. A creamy riverbed of milk chocolate lazily rolls over the tongue, providing a solid base for those really big berry flavors that were in the aroma to come bouncing out of the cup and splashing onto the taste buds, like tiny little Fruit Gushers. Huge (and a little bit fermented) flavors of strawberry jelly, raspberry, cranberry, blueberry, and raisin flood the palate, leaving behind the astringency of red wine tannins and violet petals.
As the cup cools, the coffee remains true to the natural process and really falls off. This is the thing I’ve come to dislike most in natural Yirgs—once the cup reaches room temp, it’s lost just about all of the intensity that it kicked off with; once the coffee is no longer hot, you might as well dump whatever’s left in the cup. These coffees are so frontloaded!
That’s not say, however, that Spotted Cow’s Wanago isn’t a good coffee; for a natural Yirg, it’s very well done—it really hits the mark. So, if you’re a fan of natural Yirgs, disregard all of my negativity and buy this coffee because you’re very likely to really enjoy it.
Full body; juicy mouthfeel; berry acidity; clean finish.
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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.