The Lab

Ethiopia Yirgacheffe Idido and Espresso

Small Gedeo zone is marked in Pink

Ethiopia is divided into Regions, Zones, Woredas, and Kebele. Each designation defines a smaller and smaller area. The Idido Cooperative is located just east of the town Yirgacheffe in the Gedeo Zone in Southern Ethiopia. Yirgacheffe is also a Woreda, named for the town, bordered by Kochere to the south and Wenago to the north. This particular lot was grown 1900-2100masl. The coffee is fully washed and dried on raised beds for 12-15 days. The beans are transported in parchment to Addis-Ababa for milling and export.

Idido is part of Yirgacheffe Coffee Farmers Cooperative Union or YCFCU. This network encompasses 28 cooperatives and 38,000 farmers. Idido comprises more than 1,000 of those members. Each member represents a small farm that grows coffee as well as bananas, vegetables, and other shade trees. Previously the Ethiopian Government required coffee to be sold on an exchange with only designations by relatively large geographic area and cleanliness of preparation. In recent years the government has allowed for certain cooperatives and washing stations to bypass the exchange in order to maintain partnerships and receive a premium for their coffee.

We roasted this coffee on our newly installed Diedrich IR-5! The goal was to produce a fruity and complex coffee for espresso. We roasted this coffee with a relatively high charge temperature for 50% total drum capacity. We hit first crack at about 8 minutes and achieved a light roast at 22% development. This coffee’s high density and small bean size allow it to withstand a high application of heat throughout the roast.

We wanted to maintain a high body in our final shot, so we began our dial in process with a pretty classic EBR of 53%. 20g dose yielding 38g in 40 seconds. This yielded a shot that was pretty delicious, but a bit intense, with a slightly bitter floral finish indicating over-extraction. We coarsened our grind and attempted to decrease the shot time to yield the complex and fruity cup we desired. Our grind was too coarse and our next shot was still a bit intense, but now sour. One of the amazing things about this coffee was that all of these shots were sweet and bright.  A few more shots later, after increasing the dose, spreading out the brew ratio, and coarsening the grind, our final shot was exactly what we were looking for. It had bright berry acidity, complex floral elements with refined sugar sweetness, and a syrupy body. We used 21g yielding a 47g shot in 24 seconds. We refracted the resulting espresso and calculated 20.1% extraction.

This Ethiopia Yirgacheffe Idido is currently available from Royal NY

Patrick McKeown

Patrick began his coffee journey on Long Island at a low volume coffee bar, and roasting at home. Since then he has been a barista, manager, and craft roaster in NYC.