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DISCOVERY

Moplaco’s Sheka Mill

This month’s coffees are both produced by our close Ethiopian partners Moplaco, at their Kawo Kanin farm and Sheka mill in the Southern Nations, Nationalities and Peoples Region. After visiting Kawo Kanin in January 2020, we have been longing to return to this captivating region. However, both the Covid-19 pandemic and the situation in Ethiopia have made this impossible. We have therefore been collaborating remotely with the team at Moplaco over the past couple of seasons, honing the selection of coffees which we’re excited to share with you in the coming weeks.

The first releases in this month’s subscription are a fitting opener to Moplaco’s work, one of the very few entities in Ethiopia that work in every link in the chain, from tree to export.

Ethiopia

The Sheka forest

The Sheka forest is located in the Southern Nations, Nationalities and Peoples Region (SNNPR) in the far southwest of the country near the border with South Sudan. The forest, one of the most beautiful places we have visited during our years of coffee travels, is one of the largest areas of indigenous forest remaining in Ethiopia, known for its production of wild honey. While the healthy bees here are a good sign of biodiversity and minimal chemical use, much of Ethiopia has become very intensively farmed in recent years. The government has aimed to widen this intensive approach by offering grants to encourage agriculture across the still relatively untouched SNNPR. Especially tea and coffee production is incentivised, leading to the involvement of foreign investors, deforesting swathes of land to create large estates and enforcing questionable working conditions for natives.

Ethiopia

Semi-forest coffee

Forty kilometres outside the town of Masha lies Moplaco’s Kawo Kamin farm, probably the single most beautiful coffee farm we have ever visited. Here, coffee is grown in synergy with the Sheka forest, using the indigenous forest as shade for the trees, keeping biodiversity alive. This also has a positive effect on coffee quality; the plants are well-nourished and grow in ideal moist conditions under the forest canopy. Most of the local farmers have even been able to maintain their bee hives in the 150 hectares of protected forest that surround the farm. This mode of production, working alongside the forest to cultivate coffee while still pruning and managing the plantation, is known as semi-forest coffee.

Moplaco

This carefully produced raw material is then taken to Moplaco’s Sheka mill to be processed. This station is Moplaco’s newest, and has mainly produced natural coffees so far, as the large fermentation tanks required to produce washed coffees were only just completed before the beginning of this harvest season. The Moplaco spirit of experimentation that we have witnessed on our visits is also present here, small lots of carbonic maceration and anaerobic processes have been produced en masse, like the small experimental lot we were able to share in last year’s Advent Calendar.

Floral & acidic

Sheka Washed

Sheka doesn’t have access to the large de-pulpers seen throughout the rest of the country. This means that to accomplish this washed process, the entire lot had to be de-pulped using a a small hand cranked de-pulper, before being washed in the new tanks, and dried on raised beds over 17 days. This has led to a clean and fresh expression of the Sheka terroir, one we came to recognise rather clearly during rounds of cupping together with Moplaco earlier in the year. The floral aromas here are complex, fresh and almost herbal, while the cup is dominated by a note of fresh and ripe kiwi fruit.

fruity & balanced

Sheka Natural

Natural coffees have been exported from Sheka several times now, and are now produced using a well-defined protocol. Cherries are carefully selected before drying raised beds under shade. Plastic covers are often used, and the drying takes slightly longer than it would in much of Ethiopia due to frequent rains and cool temperatures during harvest. This long drying results in a soft and rich sweetness in the cup, softening the kiwi notes we found in several Sheka lots this year into ripe tropical fruit, while maintaining the distinctly complex florals.

DISCOVERY

The Sheka Mill

We are excited to continue our collaboration with Heleanna and her team at Moplaco. The quality and clear terroir character of these two lots is a testament to their work in the field, but also to their desire to innovate. The Sheka mill was only completely just short of 3 years ago, but is already producing a wide palette of flavour expressions, each taking its base in the clear ‘Sheka’ character. This innovation, in new mills, projects, traceability and processing, is a key aspect of Moplaco’s work, leading to an almost tangible dynamism in the coffees they are able to produce. We hope you enjoy two examples this month.

Opening Hours

La Cabra - Graven

Graven 20

8000 Aarhus C

Denmark

Opening Hours:

Mon - Sat: 08:00 - 18:00

Sun: 09:00 - 17:00

La Cabra - Bakery

Borggade 4F

8000 Aarhus C

Denmark

Opening Hours:

Mon - Sat: 07:00 - 18:00

Sun: 07:00 - 17:00

La Cabra - New York

152 2nd Ave

New York

United States

Opening Hours:

Mon - Fri: 08:00 - 18:00

Sat - Sun: 09:00 - 18:00

La Cabra - Bangkok

813 Charoen Krung Rd, Talat Noi, Samphanthawong

Bangkok 10100

Thailand

Opening Hours:

Mon - Fri: 08:00 - 17:00

Sat - Sun: 09:00 - 18:00

La Cabra - Sharjah

1F, House of Wisdom, Al Juraina 1

Sharjah

United Arab Emirates

Opening Hours:

Sun - Thu: 09:00 - 23:00

Fri - Sat: 09:00 - 24:00

Graven 20

8000 Aarhus C

Denmark

Opening Hours:

Mon - Sat: 08:00 - 18:00

Sun: 09:00 - 17:00

Borggade 4F

8000 Aarhus C

Denmark

Opening Hours:

Mon - Sat: 07:00 - 18:00

Sun: 07:00 - 17:00

152 2nd Ave

New York

United States

Opening Hours:

Mon - Fri: 08:00 - 18:00

Sat - Sun: 09:00 - 18:00

813 Charoen Krung Rd, Talat Noi, Samphanthawong

Bangkok 10100

Thailand

Opening Hours:

Mon - Fri: 08:00 - 17:00

Sat - Sun: 09:00 - 18:00

1F, House of Wisdom, Al Juraina 1

Sharjah

United Arab Emirates

Opening Hours:

Sun - Thu: 09:00 - 23:00

Fri - Sat: 09:00 - 24:00

Contact

Webshop

Marguerite Vibys Pl. 1

2000 Frederiksberg

Denmark

Have a question?

Please write us in the chat.

Roastery

Marguerite Vibys Pl. 1

2000 Frederiksberg

Denmark

Marguerite Vibys Pl. 1

2000 Frederiksberg

Denmark

Have a question?

Please write us in the chat.

Marguerite Vibys Pl. 1

2000 Frederiksberg

Denmark

EN
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