JULY~COFFEE OF THE MONTH~Idido, Yirgacheffe Ethiopia

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August 13, 2014 by beanerbar


This first lot from the Idido cooperative in Yirgacheffe Ethiopia, represents a select group of two hundred of the most dedicated farmers. These farmers turn in their best cherry at the peak of harvest for this washed special preparation coffee. Notes of melon, orange blossom, and citrus.

We have been purchasing coffee from the Idido village for almost a decade, and have really come to believe this area is special. Whether it is has a special micro-climate, or the predominance of the Kudhume variety in this area, the coffees around this area are really exceptional. To make these already exceptional coffees better, the last two years we have worked specifically with the cooperative in the village of Idido to pay premiums to the most dedicated farmers. The coffees from these producers represent the best from the cooperative, and two separate lots of these coffees will be featured by Counter Culture this year.

Cooperative’s History
The Idido Cooperative was established in the late 1970s, and joined the Yirgacheffe Farmers cooperative in 2002.
Explanation of the Name
Idido is the name of the village where the centralized washing station for this coffee is located. But the Idido Cooperative works with growers in 8 Kabeles (villages). These villages include: The Idido village itself which is also called Wegida, Aricha, Direto, Ela Tenecha, Gersse, Bowicha, H Badmie, and Charbanita.
Yirgacheffe is likely the most famous or second-most famous coffee town—Harrar being the other—in all of Ethiopia. When we first traveled to Yirgacheffe almost a decade ago, it was hard to believe that a town so tiny that if you blinked while driving through it you might miss it, could have such a reputation. The reputation, however, is there for a reason. Yirgacheffe revolutionized Ethiopian coffee decades ago by building a washing station to process coffee in the “washed” style popular in Latin America at that time. Yirgacheffe quickly became famous for its sweetly complex, almost tea-like washed coffees, and the area around Yirgacheffe town remains heaven for coffee buyers around the world, including us. Staggering altitude, ideal climates, and unique heirloom coffee varieties make this a truly special coffee region.
General Place Information
As many coffee people know, Ethiopia is the indigenous birthplace of coffee, which is believed to have grown wild in the southwestern forests for millennia.Therefore, Ethiopia has the longest-standing traditions of coffee culture and cultivation in the world. Ethiopia’s coffee trees have cross-pollinated an unknown number of times, creating more genetic coffee diversity than all other producing countries combined. As for the coffee culture of Ethiopia, it stands alone, as well. No other country celebrates coffee with such high regard; the reverence of the daily coffee ceremony is a cultural treasure and an incredibly important part of the fabric of Ethiopian social, familial, and business life.
Idido is composed of a little more than 1,000 members in total. The members of Idido have very small plots of land generally around their house. Total, they tend to have about 1.5 hectares of land, and, in that, 1.5 hectares about half is generally coffee. It is a diverse ecosystem with lots of different plants and shade. This area is also extremely densely populated (second only to Addis Ababa), making the diversity of the ecosystem that much more impressive. While forested land and tree diversity are issues in many parts of Ethiopia including the south, compared to other regions of the world with this size of population, the amount shade canopy is impressive. While a large percentage of population here grows coffee as a cash crop, people are largely subsistence farmers. Enset (false banana) is the main food crop followed by many types of fruits, vegetables, and beans.
Varieties: Kudhume, Wolisho, Dega, and other heirloom types
Elevation: 1,900 – 2,100 meters
Post-Harvest Process: Washed and then dried on raised beds for 10 to 14 days
Harvest Time: January 2014 – February 2014
Certifications: Certified Organic • Counter Culture Direct Trade Certified

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