Hambela-Alaka Estate in the Guji zone of southern Ethiopia is one of the more impressive coffee places you'll visit. With over two dozen year round employees, the place swells to around 700 seasonal workers as the coffee harvest gets into full swing. These young men were keen to show their strength loading ~100 lb sacks of parchment coffee onto the trucks headed for the dry mill. At one point they offered me the chance to lug a few bags out of the warehouse and onto the back of the truck. But I was happy to just smile and nod and pretend not to understand the language they were speaking plainly with their hand motions. No place to set down my camera, you see. Soon these coffees will be hulled and bagged as green (raw) coffee beans and sent across the ocean to discerning roasters...and perhaps Brown will be lucky enough to be among that number. Anyway, I was there.
This is actually an unofficial NEW COFFEE ALERT. We are currently reviewing pre-ship samples from Metad, the owners of Hambela-Alaka as well as purchasers of quite a lot of outgrower coffees from surrounding smallholders. If the samples are good (a high probability) we'll work through the logistics of bringing in one/some of these coffees to Brown by mid to late Summer 2018.