Ninga Hill Natural - Burundi - 12oz (340gr)
Washing Station: Ninga Hill
Producer: Ninga Hill farmers
Variety: Heirloom Bourbon
Altitude: 1700-1794 masl
Partnership with Long Miles Coffee Project
Coffee from Ninga is elegant and complex; delicate and structured. Floral, red berries, chocolate, molasses and banana flavors fill the cup and are balanced with a light acidity. Upon finish, Ninga leaves a crisp, effervescent feel in your mouth.
The History of Ninga Hill
In 2013, Long Miles Coffee built Bukeye- its first washing station- and produced its first bag of Burundi coffee. The volume of coffee cherries that were delivered to Bukeye during the first harvest season far outstripped the small washing station’s capacity. It turned out that coffee farming families were coming from far and wide, traveling more than three hours by foot to reach a washing station with fair scales and that paid a fair price for coffee cherries.
The dedication of coffee farmers in this region to producing quality coffee stood out to the Long Miles team, both in the field and on the cupping table. Every year since then, we have been trying to bring a washing station closer to this community. In 2017, we bought a piece of land on Ninga Hill, a fifteen kilometer drive from Bukeye Washing Station. However, significant changes in the country’s coffee regulatory board delayed the build out of a washing station. It took us close to three years to cross the bureaucratic red tape. This year, we have started building traditional African raised drying tables and producing the first naturally processed micro-lots of the season: Bumba, Giku and Ninga. It takes a lot of time, resources and people to build a washing station in Burundi. It is our hope to see the Long Miles Coffee’s Ninga Washing Station built to completion in time for next year’s coffee harvest season.
PROCESSING STYLE: This year, only sundried natural coffees were processed at the Ninga Washing Station site. During the natural process coffee cherries are floated and hand-sorted, then taken straight to the drying tables. The whole coffee cherry spends between twenty-five to thirty days drying in its skin (depending on the weather), slowly turning from deep red to a prune-like purple-black color when fully dry, reaching the desired 10.5% moisture level.
FARMER CARD SYSTEM: During the peak of harvest, farmers bring their cherries to the station and each person’s contribution is recorded using the Long Miles farmer card system. This system ensures that Long Miles can trace the best quality coffee and the farmers who grow it right down to hill-level.
HARVEST PERIOD: Coffee collection usually begins in April and by the end of June the last of Burundi’s best cherries arrive at the station, although the 2020 harvest started rather slowly and will continue well into July.