Sitting at an impressive 2,020 meters above sea level, Gara Kone produces exceptional coffees. The washing station currently employs around 200 workers, who process some 1.5 million coffee cherries each year. During harvest, this freshly picked coffee cherry is delivered daily by some 1,000 independent outgrowers to the kebele of Refisa, where Gara Kone is located.The majority of the families that contribute to this lot farm organically on tiny plots of land, which average just 2–5 hectares in size. Coffee is their main cash crop and grows alongside food crops of corn, grain and bananas, under the shade of native Birbira, Wanza, and Acacia trees. The average elevation of the farms in this region is very high – around 1,950–2,150m above sea level – and this, combined region’s cool temperatures, is ideal for the slow ripening of coffee cherries, leading to denser beans and a sweeter, more complex cup profile.
The West Arsi Zone is located in central-eastern Ethiopia, in the Oromia political region and is named after the Arsi Oromo people. Historically, coffee from West Arsi has been classified as ‘Sidama,’ even though the Zone is not within the Sidama political region. West Arsi has begun to distinguish itself in recent years, largely due to the Zone’s excellent results in the country’s Cup of Excellence competition. Part of the West Arsi Zone covers Ethiopia’s Great Rift Valley, which contains several mountains, volcanoes and great lakes. Most of the region’s specialty-grade coffee comes from the valley’s highlands, where humidity is high and temperatures are relatively cool. As a result of these conditions, West Arsi has higher yields and an earlier season than most other coffee-growing regions. Communities here still live rurally and make a living from farming, with few or no agrochemicals used on the fields. Coffee remains the major cash crop for most families, who grow coffee alongside food for consumption. West Arsi is bordered to the west by the Sidama political region, to the south by the Guji Zone, and to the west by Arsi and the ‘Harrar’ coffee region, one of the country’s three trademarked coffee regions. The Zone is home to the Nensebo woreda, a region that is well-regarded among specialty coffee buyers.
Testi Trading PLC is a family-owned company embedded at the origin to supply the specialty coffee industry with high-quality coffee beans. Mr. Faysel together with his family established Testi Trading PLC in 2009. The name ‘Testi’ means joy or Happiness in the Harrari language (it is also the name of Faysel’s middle son).
Testi coffee is focusing on quality and long-term relationships, as well as maximizing the potential of Ethiopian Coffee. Their focus is to work with their supply chain of smallholder farms to improve their livelihoods and living conditions. Testi coffee independently own 3 farms and twenty washing stations in all specialty coffee growing regions.
Depulping process: initiated within 6 to 8 hours after harvesting the cherries from the coffee trees. To prevent further natural fermentation.
Fermentation process: We ferment the coffee in a fermentation tank 36-48 hours to loosen the mucilage.
Washing process—the coffee parchment is washed in the water Channel by the staff team members at the washing station, until mucilage is removed.
The way to determine the outcome
1. seeing the clarity of water. Though out the washing process the cloudy water is replaced until it’s resulted in clear transparent water.
2. The sound difference when pushing & pulling the coffee parchment in the water channel. A slight traction noise is noticed in the process which indicates a near completion.
3. As simple as checking manually to feel for the slim/mucilage.
Drying process – once Fermentation & washing is complete we layout the parchment on raised African beds under a parabolic shade net for 5-7 days depending on weather conditions. Once the moisture content is at 11 to 12 percent it's then relocated to nearby warehouse for storage.
Region: West Arsi, Oromia
Producer: 1000 Smallholders, Gara Kone Washing Station
Variety: Ethiopian Heirloom Varieties
Taste Notes: Rooibos Tea, Orange, Lemongrass
Please note that 250g bags can be shipped in kava boxes as an additional option. All grind sizes are approximate and in relation to the equipment we use. Grind size or setting might differ from your equipment preferences. If not certain order beans as we can't accept returns for pre-ground coffees. Thank you for understanding.