Ethiopia Sidamo Shantawene


Our Ethiopia Sidamo Shantawene is sourced from a group of producers that organized around the Testi Ayla Washing Station, located in Shenta Wene kebele, Sidama Zone of the Southern Nations, Nationalities and Peoples’ Region (SNNPR), Ethiopia.

From our awesome importer: “Sidama has one of the most robust cooperative unions in the country with 53 member cooperatives, as well as a thriving industry of independent washing stations. Testi Ayla is one such independent, owned by Testi Coffee PLC and operated by Faysel Yonis

The Testi Ayla washing station is located in Shanta Wene, a small community in eastern Sidama, close to the Harenna Forest preserve. The 1,000 farmers delivering cherry to Testi Ayla average two hectares each in this area and some of the highest elevations in the whole of Sidama. There are three collection sites responsible for managing cherry delivery throughout the catchment area. Testi Ayla processes equal volumes of both fully washed and natural coffees of the highest quality.”

This crop is naturally processed. “Naturals here take even longer than washed lots (10-12 days drying, often covered during the hot afternoons to protect from cracking) to dry, due to overnight low temperatures and humidity, which slow dehydration…It’s hard to find grade 1 naturals in Sidama, as the vast majority of the zone’s coffee tends to be washed, or sundried of a lower grade…

Private processors like Testi Ayla are a thing to behold. It’s a tough business being a private processor in Sidama, as the sheer density of competition among washing stations tends to push cherry prices high throughout a single harvest, and privates often don’t have the backing of a larger union to secure financing, regulate cherry prices, or bring export costs down with centralized milling and marketing. Successful private washing stations like Testi Ayla, then, need to be not only standout quality processors to stay afloat; they must also be excellent business developers with connections and community standing, in order to continue winning the business of farmers and buyers alike, and stay afloat for the long term.”

Bright and sweet aroma with berry, citrus, and floral hints. Lots of flavor in the cup with nuances of dried cherry, blueberry, lemon, and dark chocolate. Full medium body, smooth, and syrupy. A nice balance of sweet and slightly tangy notes.