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Kenya Thunguri

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Trying to find a Kenya worth the money is not easy.  It’s often considered the best coffee origin in the world, and when you find a good one, it really is.  But all Kenya coffee is very expensive, so a really good Kenya is not good enough.  I can’t justify the price unless it’s an AWESOME Kenya.  So with that said, after rejecting over a dozen recommended Kenya samples over the past couple months, I’ve found a winner.

It’s a blend of the famous SL-28, and the SL-34 varietals — the two varietals that have made Kenya loved around the world.  AA?  All those letters mean are how big the bean is.   A is one size smaller than AA.  Then B. Then AB which is a blend of A and B sized beans. Then there’s Peaberry.  Sometimes the bigger AA beans taste better, sometimes they don’t.  Bigger beans do cost a little bit more, but the important thing is that the beans were sorted by size, so they’re all the same size, and they’re going to roast evenly.

This lot of coffee is really particular — even a few seconds, a few degrees difference, makes a difference in taste.  When I take the bean temperature to 395-396 degrees, it tastes too bright, a bit sour.  At 400, it’s overdone, bitter, lacking complexity.   At 398 — Eureka!

Rich complexity (cherry, honey, mild citrus, mild berry), sweet, medium body, medium brightness, and sweet lingering aftertaste with no earthiness.

So roughly a Full City roast would be the sweet spot on this one, no second cracks.  Note that your thermometer may not quite match mine, and that air roasting may give you different results than drum roasting, but bottom line is this:  If it comes out sour, give it a few more seconds next time.  If it comes out bitter, back it up a few seconds next time.  It may take a few roasts to nail it, but it’s worth it when you do!

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