New coffee: Sasaba from Ethiopia's Highlands

Renowned amongst the coffee connoisseurs both in roasteries and coffee loving homes around the world, Sasaba truly is a shining gem from the Guji Zone. We’re beyond excited to be able to offer this spectacular naturally processed coffee - fresh harvest that we sourced on our origin trip to Ethiopia.

This naturally processed coffee has been slowly dried on raised beds whilst at high altitudes which brings out our favourite flavour expressions of the Ethiopian heirloom variety. Especially great for filter, it’s bursting with notes of blueberry, stone fruits, strawberry & cream, stewed fruits and mulled wine.

The long road to Sasaba washing station

The fertile area of Kercha district is home to two washing stations and mills – one of which is Sasaba. Tsegay Hagos Tesfaye’s washing station is tucked away at such high altitudes that you have to take the rough muddy paths up to the green hills that only special Soviet-Era Kamas trucks with a 6-wheel drive will handle.

Around 500 farmers growing fewer than 20 coffee trees in their backyards in the hills of Kercha (Guji)deliver ripe cherries to the Sasaba mill, making the  production a truly collaborative effort. The washing station sits at 1,700m altitude and is equipped with a large pulper and 600 African drying beds.

The coffee grows on the slopes of the hills shaded by a mix of existing forest trees and those planted by the farmers, such as enset (false banana) trees. Working alone, it would be hard for these farmers to market and sell their coffee for a fair price. 

Sasaba is a true collective effort 

Tesfaye’s motto is to support the smallholders delivering cherries because he knows  that the success of his mill is closely tied to their success. “Sasaba does not grow alone”, he says, “We support our farmers and train them, so they can one day export their own coffee.”
He works together with the ones that have the passion to gain more experience and learn how to care for their coffee trees better. He even helps them out with transportation for medical emergencies or loans during the off-harvest months. “We are by their side, whatever happens”, says Tsegay, “and because of that, they are by ours”, he adds.
This leads to a positive change, with both smallholders and mill benefiting from better coffee and better sales.

Tsegay Hagos keeps his station producing both washed and natural coffees impressively organised, with high standards of pre-sorting and lot separation which translates into consistent quality. Because Tsegay oversees the entire supply chain, he is able to ensure the highest quality each harvest. And you will taste that in every cup. 

Sasaba is a naturally processed coffee with a clean body and fruity flavour profile that makes it stand out amongst the Ethiopian coffee .


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