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Sumatra Wahana Estate Natural
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Sumatra Wahana Estate Natural

Our Review

Established only in 2006, the Wahana Estate is located around Lake Toba in the town of Sidikalang, in the famous Lintong region of North Sumatra.  The coffee is grown in rich volcanic soil at 1,200 to 1,400 meters above sea level.  This coffee is a bit of an anomaly since it is a dry processed (also meaning, "natural").  Most Indonesian coffees that we sell here are wet processed coffees.  Natural processing leaves the fruit attached to the bean for much longer which has a significant impact on the final flavor profile.

Rasuna Trees on the Wahana EstateThe majority of the Wahana Estate's coffee production is wet processed, but this estate likes to do things out of the box, experimenting with different tree varietals, processing methods, and the like.  This natural coffee comes 100% from the Rasuna coffee tree, which is a hybrid plant taken from the Typica and Catimor varieties.  Rasuna trees originate in Sumatra and is a relative newcomer to the industry.  The Wahana Estate currently alots this varietal over 90 hectares of its property in the Sidikalang hills.  These are shade grown trees, which is not just good for the environment.  Coffee trees grow best in the shade where the fruit is sheltered from the wind and too much direct sunlight.

The Wahana Estate claims to follow all the organic and rainforest alliance growing and processing protocols, but they are not yet certified in either one.  This is not uncommon, since obtaining actual certification can take years.  It is at least good to know that they are on their way to achieving certification.

So how does it taste?  In a word: fantastic.  Bearing in mind that I bias towards dry processed coffees, I'm still personally very excited about this one.  Fruity and complex, this is not a mild, one-note coffee.  This is not a coffee to drink absent mindedly.  It demands attention from the first wash of the aroma.  It is fruity, yes, but there is also a nice earthy, boldness to the body that keeps the coffee "grounded" in Indonesian flavor territory.  If you are familiar with other Sumatran coffees, you will recognize them here but you will also encounter other things that you are likely not used to in typical Sumatrans.  The fragrance is very much like green apple and perhaps some cherry.  It's really very striking when you first smell it.  

There are juicy peach and watermelon notes alongside a vibrant, earthy medium-full body and a suprisingly short (for a Sumatran coffee) finish with pepper & mesquite that lingers on the palate for just a moment.  We detect a medium acidity.

The Details

Arrival Date: May 20, 2014
Attributes: Medium-Full body.  Medium acidity.
Bean Size: Average to large
Chaff Content: Medium
Dominant Cup Characteristic: Complexity. Juicy, floral but retains earthy indonesian character.
Environmental Factors: Shade grown, wirking towards organic & RFA certification
Flavor Traits: wild, wangy, complex flavors from fruity to spicy.
Growing Conditions: Shade grown, hand picked sun dried. Grown on high volcanic soils.
Hardness of the Bean: Hard, though not as dense as high grown Central American coffee
Processing: Dry processed - fully natural
Roasting: Start with a Full City (Medium Dark), or just barely short of the second crack.  Because of the natural processing that imparts a lot of sweet, floral, and spice notes to the coffee we do not recommend roasting this dark (don't let them see 2nd crack) since this will mute almost all of these flavors.  However, the beans are dense enough to roast as dark as you like.
Recommendation: Though I admit I often prefer wild coffees, this one is a new addition to my short list.  Sumatran fans, as well as those who don't typically drink Sumatran coffees, will likely enjoy this new offerring.

Reminder:  This is raw coffee.  You have to roast it before brewing!


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Quantity Price
0 - 2$7.53
3 - 5$7.28
6 - 19$7.03
20 - 49$6.78

Last Updated: Monday, 30 November 2015 16:23

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