Roasters notes: Congo coffee is incredibly special. I’ve spent the past few years in and out of the DRC working as a photojournalist and have gotten to know the country quite personally. It’s one of the most breathtakingly beautiful places on the planet with one of the most heartbreaking yet inspiring stories of resilience. I could go on and on about Congo, but what of its coffee? Decades of conflict and corruption have made it difficult to access coffee in Congo, and the specialty coffee world all but moved on without it. This makes it one of the last largely unexplored coffee regions in Africa; with heirloom Bourbon genetics and processing methods yet untried, the potential is astounding. Despite its underdog status among other African origins, the comeback has been made possible thanks to Congolese led initiatives that work to promote peace and sustainability through the production of great coffee (did I mention the Congolese are resilient?). Our importing partners, Mighty Peace Coffee, have named it the “peace trade” and aim to provide full transparency while working closely with their Congolese partners. From Mighty Peace: “The fresh arrival from which your next order ascends supports 1,050 specialty famers and 600 cooperative leaders. Our fully-integrated coffee business is enabling multiple stakeholders to help improve the living conditions of its members, providing schooling, housing, jobs, and reducing coffee smuggling on Lake Kivu, while promoting women’s pygmy rights.”
In the cup: Congo coffee’s are often associated with “funk”, what I would describe as a “woody” taste. Our previous Idjwi offering had that hallmark and was quite polarizing because of it. This coffee lacks that entirely, and is easily the best coffee I’ve had from the DRC. A nice lime acidity is accompanied by a cherry like fruitiness and a wonderful cola and bakers chocolate finish. Coffee from Congo is often very juicy, sweet, and heavy in body – this is no exception. An excellent cup and incredible quality.