Smooth and well-balanced, we taste tamarind, grapefruit, and plum.
Led by dynamic sister team of CEO Hirut Birhanu and Manager Mahder Birhanu, Dumerso is a family endeavor. The flagship washing station is Dumerso, acquired 12 years ago and named for the village where it is located in the Yirgacheffe District. The family has lovingly worked in coffee for more than 20 years, in the process undergoing quite a lot of upheaval and real challenges.
Piggybacking on racial tensions, agitators incited the local people to destroy dozens of washing stations owned by Ethiopians of other tribal backgrounds. Dumerso’s site was looted and destroyed. The family lost a lot of money in the process but remained hopeful that they could do good for the area and rebuild. In the same season, nightly low temperatures that hadn’t been seen in more than fifty years caused frost to strike the area and decimated the harvest. In spite of these challenges, with great fortitude, the family has continued to forge ahead. Ever since they have been rebuilding and in so doing have begun to focus on dialing in excellence in process controls.
Coffee accounts for more than 90% of the livelihood of the local population, and in turn, smallholder farmers, producers, suppliers, traders, and laborers contribute to a majority of the economic activi- ties in the region. Dumerso site employs 14 year-round works and more than 400 during the harvest season, 95% of which are women. More than 650 farmers from nearby communities including Dumerso, Yirgacheffe, Hafusa, Adame, and Bedessa supply cherries to Dumerso’s washing stations. The cherries are brought in and weighed, notated, and each smallholder producer is paid cash for their cherries.
What is Honey processing?
After the skin and pulp is removed from the coffee cherry, the beans are fermented for a full 24 hours with their mucilage-heavy parchment (a membrane that surrounds the beans) intact. Then they're carefully washed to preserve some of the mucilage, stopping short of a fully washed coffee. Once washed, the beans are moved to shaded drying beds where they slowly dry under a shade canopy with excellent airflow. The drying with shade adds 4 to 5 days overall drying time with this White Honey, and affords a stable distribution of moisture content throughout the cellular structure, along with a dialed in water activity. While shade drying gives just a little more control than full sun-drying, it can be a little tricky to cover the beans at the right times. We find this strong uniformity in the drying of all the coffees is critical in a good honey process.
What is the difference between black, red, and white honey?
Black, Red, and White Honey processed refers to the color of the parchment surrounding the depulped coffee bean. Black Honey coffees carry characteristic black splotches from the heavy mucilage load. Red Honey coffees are also splotched, but less so than black and the splotches are more red than black. White Honey carries the least mucilage and is more yellow/white in hue over all.