Intelligentsia

Nshimiyimana Gaspard leads the charge for quality by rallying neighboring farmers to improve their practices. The result of the micro-community’s efforts is unique, offering up flavors like pineapple and black tea with a ginger finish. 
  • SKU 234003
  • Country Rwanda
  • Region within Country Kigarama, Southern Province
  • Elevation 1900 - 2000 m.a.s.l.
  • Farm / Producer Name various smallholder farms
  • Farmer / Producer Name Gaspard Nshimiyimana
  • Buyer Geoff Watts
  • Cultivar Bourbon
  • Harvest Time April - June 2016
  • Harvest Year 2016
Direct Trade 1
Single Origin 1
In Season 1
TropicalLight SugarsFloral

Gaspard Rwanda

Rwanda is known as “the land of a thousand hills” for the countless rolling slopes and gentle, rounded peaks that stretch in every direction throughout the country. This tiny country is home to over half a million smallholder coffee farmers whose farms are nano-scale, measured by the number of coffee plants rather than the size of the landholding. On average, the coffee gardens on these farms contain just 100-200 coffee plants. And since each tree produces fewer than ten pounds of cherry over the three-month harvest period, a typical daily picking may only fill a couple of buckets. Nearly all of the coffee here is produced this way: in tiny quantities, hand-picked by growers who transport their cherry on foot or on bike to communal washing stations where they are combined and processed together with other coffees that arrived at the same time. A single ‘day lot’ from the Nyarusiza washing station can contain coffees from several hundred individual producers. Weeks later, when these day lots are moved to the dry mill for final preparation, they are usually put together into even larger batches. That means the coffee that is exported from Rwanda often represents the combined work of up to a thousand growers or more.

That’s why it is extremely unusual to see a single farmer’s name attached to a bag of Rwandan coffee. But Gaspard has broken the mold, and done so with a loud crack. In 1997, he started his farm with 100 plants and few expectations for success given how little coffee was valued back then. Fortunately, despite limited early returns on his investment in coffee, he persisted. In 2003, Gaspard’s fortunes began to change when he connected with Sam Ntwari from Bufcafe. He began applying better farm management practices—mulching, pruning, and increased attention to soil quality. He achieved better yields. And he began and seeing some returns on all that he had invested into the farm. By 2015, he’d expanded the farm to nearly 20,000 coffee plants and begun intercropping coffee with macadamia trees to diversify his income.

Gaspard’s commitment and visible advances in recent years have proven contagious: others in the community want to catch the same bug he did, and Gaspard is happy to oblige. He’s been working with many of his neighbors, sharing his accumulated wisdom about coffee farming to help them follow in his footsteps. Today, he aggregates coffees from some of his friends with adjacent farms and delivers them together with his own to the mill at Nyarusiza, where they are pulped and processed separately from all the others. This is the third year we’ve been selling his coffees under his name, and we are honored to be part of his story.

Espresso

Espresso

All home and commercial espresso machines.

Turkish Grind

Turkish Grind

If you need a little bit coarser grind for your espresso machine or utilize this favorite preparation in eastern Europe.

Stovetop Espresso

Stovetop Espresso

Moka pots and stovetop espresso kettles need a very fine grind.

Cone Filter - Paper

Cone Filter - Paper

Most automatic and electric brewers utilize this grind setting.

Cone Filter - Gold

Cone Filter - Gold

Automatic brewers with reusable mesh filters, or a Kone manual brewing insert.

Universal

Universal

If you're buying for a friend, or are just not sure - this is a good grind for most drip brewers.

Technivorm

Technivorm

We found this excellent automatic brewer needed a bit coarser grind than other cone filter brewers.

Vacuum Brewer

Vacuum Brewer

For those with an electric or flame-heated vacuum brewer.

Flat Bottom - Paper

Flat Bottom - Paper

Any basket-style brewer, including automatic and Kalita wave manual brewing.

Flat Bottom - Gold

Flat Bottom - Gold

For automatic brewers with basket-style reusable filters.

French Press

Hario Dripper

Manual pourover cone brewing is a simple, no frills way of brewing.

Grind Type

French Press

A classic of immersion brewing. Select this grind for perfect classical preparation.

Chemex

Chemex

The iconic Chemex, this grind provides a perfectly paired offering for the special filters made for this brewer.

Percolator

Percolator

Our coarsest grind, this also provides a good pre-ground solution for cold brew at home.

Whole Bean

Whole Bean

For those with a grinder at home, we love freshly ground coffee! We prefer burr grinders for a more even brew.