clean red fruit, mandarin orange, fresh summer berries, red plum jam, sweet marzipan, milk chocolate
excellent, heavy, simple syrup
silky, smooth, delicate
orange zest, very clean, big red fruit, fresh raspberry, balanced acidity vs sweetness, layered complexity
$18 / lb
various smallholder farmers
Tuffahi, Dawairi, Jaadi, various other heirloom varieties
About the Producer
This microlot comprises fresh coffee cherries collected at Mashtal ul Burhani, a privately owned collection center in Haraaz that collaborates with Al-Ezzi in the collection and tracing of high-quality coffee cherry from farmers in the area.
Shabbir Ezzi has invested not just money, time, and energy, but also his life by relocating to Yemen in order to make high-quality coffee a viable, sustainable, and empowering pursuit for the farmers in and around the coffee region of Haraaz. Al-Ezzi still works with producers in the traditional way as well, and is able through their efforts in sourcing and sorting to buy coffee at different levels of quality and traceability from producers in Yemen.
The ways that Al-Ezzi does business in Yemen’s coffee market is substantially different from the norm. Here are the main points that make their model appealing.
Farmers are paid a high base price for bringing their coffee to Al-Ezzi’s own or participating receiving stations, and are given premiums for coffees that meet certain standards of moisture, quantity, and quality selection.
Coffee farmers are voluntarily issued ID cards, which are used not only as a point of pride and respect but also to keep track of their deliveries and ensure proper, timely payment.
Each farmer’s individual contributions are meticulously recorded, which means the coffees are traceable down to individuals—highly unusual in a country where the average farmer produces less than 100 kilos of cherry.
Fresh, ripe red cherries earn an additional premium over dried cherries (how coffee is traditionally sold at market), as buying fresh cherries allows Al-Ezzi to ensure ripeness and quality before drying, and to control the drying process for evenness.