Mankira Coffee

Specialising in Premium Ethiopian Coffee

What is so special about Ethiopian coffee?

  1. Ethiopia is considered the birthplace of coffee.
  2. Ethiopian coffee is considered to be some of the best coffee in the world thanks to its high altitude growing conditions. The general rule of thumb: High Altitude = High Quality. See "Effect of Altitude on Coffee Flavour" below for more detail.
  3. Coffea arabica is a species of coffea indigenous to the highlands of Ethiopia.
  4. Genetically, Ethiopia has the most diversified of coffee types (there are thousands), mostly wild and/or undocumented so the range of flavours has the potential to be much greater. To view the Ethiopian coffee bean profiles, see: Bean Profiles.
  5. Ethiopian coffee flavour profiles are made all the more interesting thanks to the processing methods that are used in ways that don't really occur elsewhere (except perhaps Brazil). See "Effect of Processing on Coffee Flavour" below for more detail.
  6. The Ethiopian coffee bean is steeped in a rich history of tradition and culture. Ethiopians have been coming together over coffee for centuries. Coffee is an experience in Ethiopia that is shared with family and friends through daily coffee ceremonies. Coffee drinking is cherished as a special and important time to gather and can last up to several hours.
  7. Coffee is important to Ethiopia's economy; around 60% of foreign income is generated from coffee, and an estimated 15 million of the population rely on some aspect of coffee production for their livelihood.
  8. Ethiopia is the world's seventh largest producer of coffee, and Africa's top producer.

Effect of Altitude on Coffee Flavour

Coffee grows in tropical climates in what is known as the "coffee belt" or the "bean belt" which is a region between the Tropic of Cancer and the Tropic of Capricorn. The belt represents a tropical band extending approximately 30º north and south of the equator and encompasses countries in the Pacific Islands, South America and mid to southern Africa which represent the world’s best coffee growing regions. 

Image sourced from http://camanoislandcoffee.com/bean-belt/

The influence of environment on the flavour of how coffee tastes cannot be underestimated. Coffees grown at high altitudes greater than 1400m (3000ft) have a more pronounced flavour profile and with most coffees in Ethiopia grown at an altitude ranging between 1500 - 2700m (4900 - 8858ft), Ethiopia has gained a reputation for producing some of the highest quality coffees around.  Coffee beans which are grown at high altitude are hard, dense, and possess a superior coffee flavour. It is generally regarded that as altitude increases, a coffee’s flavour profile becomes more distinctive. 

So how does high altitude provide ideal growing conditions for the coffee tree? Well, elevated growing conditions mean that the coffee bean can grow:

Effect of Processing on Coffee Flavour

Ethiopian coffee flavour profiles are made all the more interesting thanks to the processing methods that are used in ways that don't really occur elsewhere (except perhaps Brazil). In Ethiopia, coffees can be processed either as: