Rutsiro District, Rwanda
The Kopakama collective in Western Rwanda is comprised of 797 smallholder farms. The micro lots dot the emerald hills rising from the shores of Lake Kivu. The lake creates a cool, moist microclimate and the crops grown in the volcanic soil here are lush and verdant. It’s a breathtakingly beautiful region that yields fruit-forward coffee.
Approximately half the smallholder farms of Kopakama are owned by women. In fact, two of the five board members of the collective are women. This particular coffee comes from the Ejo Heza Women’s Association, a smaller division of the Kopakama collective. Ejo Heza means “a beautiful tomorrow.”
The farmers here are highly organized as they plan for and invest in tomorrow. In the last 13 years, the Kopakama farmers worked hard to build two washing stations to process their coffee. Now, they are looking to build two additional washing stations for easier accessibility. Furthermore, their seedling nurseries have a high capacity so that they can produce lots of coffee plants in a relatively small space. This helps the women farmers of Ejo Heza to increase their overall crop production and profits for their organization.
Simply put, this is the perfect coffee to luxuriate in — a pleasant journey through a rich, syrupy body, followed by green apple-like sweetness, and a lingering aftertaste of citrus acidity that sets your tongue on edge. The incredibly smooth body and sweetness of this coffee is offset by a subtle tartness, like those early summer cherries.
With every sip, try gently swirling it around your mouth to fully experience a beautiful harmony of flavors. You will want to fill your cup over and over again.
Producer: Ejo Heza Women’s Association, Kopamaka Cooperative
Taste notes: Sweet and syrupy with lively citrus acidity, apple, cherry and kiwi notes
Region: Rutsiro Disrict, Rwanda
Altitude: 1,500 – 1,900 MASL