November 28, 2016 by beanerbar
The tiny village of Buziraguhindwa has built quite a reputation for producing high-quality coffee. The owner of the town’s washing station, Ramadhan Salum, has an infectious drive and energy to innovate and create unique, small selections that are some of the best in the country. Through focus and attention to detail, Ramadhan and his staff created this elegant coffee with notes of tangerine, black tea, and fig.
Although Burundi has been growing coffee for decades, great-tasting coffee arriving in the U.S. is a relatively recent development. This was because of years of civil war. Up until very recently, the coffee industry was state-controlled with limited focus on quality.
In 2010, a few years after the market was privatized by the government, we met Ramadhan Salum who was building the washing station Buziraguhindwa. We immediately fell in love with the area, believed in the team at the washing station, and committed to the coffee before the washing station produced a single bean. Now, six years later, Ramdhan continues to experiment and work on projects to keep improving his coffee. Although this past year has brought instability to the country of Burundi, Ramadhan and the team continue to strive for the best and invest in the their coffee production.
Booz EE RAH goo hinn DWa
Buziraguhindwa is the name of the Colline (hillside) and village that the washing station was built in. Most washing stations, especially in East Africa, are named in this fashion. Buziraguhindwa roughly means “never retreat.” This hillside is famous for warriors who lived here long ago. Buzira “never” guhindwa (guhinda: infinitive) “make someone go back.”
Kayanza is a province in the northwest of Burundi. This area—especially around Buziraguhindwa—is not only known for its excellent coffee but also for its tea production. Buziraguhindwa itself is one of the highest-altitude areas in the country for coffee production, with the washing station at 1,896 meters. This area is close to Kibira National Park, which has been a forest preserve for almost 100 years and has impressive plant and animal biodiversity.