When you’re a coffee roaster, your biggest goal is to create something delicious for your customers. You want to honor the fruit and the farmer as you roast and craft a luxurious cup of joe. But when your product becomes an award-winning coffee? That’s an incredible honor.

Equiano Coffee is thrilled to announce that our popular Wush Wush Ginbo Keffa Ethiopia roast received a 95-point medallion award from Coffee Review. It’s such an honor to have this recognition. 

This exciting news brought a rush of orders, and we sold out quickly. Wush Wush will be back in stock on August 27th, and orders will resume shipping. In the meantime, try out another variety or stop into our tasting room in Eugene, OR. 

How Does Coffee Review Rank Different Beans?

For more than two decades, Coffee Review has been doing blind tastings of various coffee beans worldwide. When the cuppers taste and review the offerings, they know nothing about the farmers, importers, or roasters. They do not have information on race, gender, or any other identifying trait.

However, in the wake of this year’s extraordinary Black Lives Matter movement, Coffee Review offered a unique opportunity. Drawing on their desire to learn and do more, they created a tasting report specifically for coffee from Black-owned coffee companies.

This unprecedented tasting drew 44 offerings from 19 businesses, and the top 14 beans made it into the tasting report. And Equiano’s Wush Wush from Ethiopia was a top-scoring entry. It received an impressive 95 points out of a possible 100.

With professional tasters at each cupping that Coffee Review does, the rankings and tasting reports are reliable and carefully-crafted. And for this particular report, sensory expert Alicia Adams joined in as a co-cupper.

What Goes Into a Coffee Cupping?

Threee cupped cups of coffee for tasting

Also called a cupping, a coffee tasting involves some specific steps. Many amateur enthusiasts enjoy hosting cuppings for fun and training. 

But for high-quality tasting reports, roasters rely on Q Graders. These individuals are professional cuppers who earned a license from the Coffee Quality Institute. The qualifications stem from the Specialty Coffee Association protocols and serve to bring uniformity to the job.

Would you like to create a coffee cupping for yourself or fellow aficionados? Here are some tips from the pros:

  1. Have enough identical cups to accommodate your different coffees. They should hold five or six ounces each.
  2. Put two level tablespoons of coffee grounds into each cup and top with five or five ounces of hot water. Try to have the water not quite boiling. Pick one measurement and keep it consistent.
  3. Deeply sniff the aroma of each cup. Use a spoon to break up any crust that forms on the top so that you can smell it perfectly. Most grounds will settle to the bottom at this point.
  4. Take a spoonful of the coffee and bring it close to your lips. Suck it in vehemently while breathing in so that the coffee sprays over your tongue and to the back of your mouth. This step helps you sense the aromatics. Do you detect floral or citrus notes? Is it earthy or nutty? This step also gives you the coffee’s taste. It may be bitter or astringent or sweet.
  5. Roll the coffee around in your mouth to gauge its mouthfeel. Is it oily? Thin? Creamy?
  6. Spit out the coffee into a receptacle and rinse the spoon in water before repeating with the next tasting subject.

Take time to make notes of each coffee as you smell and taste it. The more often you try this, the easier it gets to differentiate each coffee’s distinct notes and texture. Professional Q Graders may even be able to detect a bean’s country of origin. 

Proud to Serve Award-Winning Coffee

Scraping creama of cupped coffee.

Equiano Coffee was proud to submit the rare Wush Wush roast from Ethiopia for the Coffee Review tasting report. This bean undergoes a highly unusual anaerobic process. The beans are deprived of oxygen during fermentation, and this method gives rise to intense fruit notes. The cuppers praised its dessert-like quality and gave it near-perfect scores in every category.

Although we sold out of Wush Wush quickly once the review became public, it will be available again as of August 27th. We are thrilled to offer this decadent coffee to the world. Come see us in the tasting room or place an order through our shop. Cheers!