Spillin' the Beans! : The Devil's Work

Like every good thing in life, it begins with a good story...

So, what better way that to begin this episode of Spillin' the Beans, than with that of Coffee itself, and why we call our Ethiopian Sidamo Coffee The Devil's Work

Origin: Ethiopia

Region: Sidamo

Estate: Daye Bensa

Farmer: Various Out-growers

Altitude: 1,900 - 2,000 MASL

Varietal: Heirloom

Certification: RFA, Organic, Premium Cup of Excellence, UTZ, C.A.F.E. Practices

Processing: Washed

Tasting Notes: Soft citric acidity, very high body with viscous coating mouthfeel. Well rounded cup. Stone fruit red berries and lemon, with a hint of jasmine.

SCA Cupping score: 84

According to legend, the history of coffee dates back to the ancient ancestors of the Kingdom of Kaffa - what we know today as Ethiopia and where the word coffee is derived from; and this is where we find a young Goat Herder by the name of Kaldi.

High in the mountains one day, Kaldi had taken his herd of goats to rest in a shaded, narrow pass, surrounded by unfamiliar trees bearing red berries. Soon the goats began jumping and dancing around. Curious of their behaviour, Kaldi decided to try the berries himself and soon he too felt compelled to jump and dance around.

Excited by his find, he went back the next day to the narrow pass and picked the small fruits to take to the Islamic Monks in a nearby Monastery, to share the invigorating feeling the berries gave him, but the Monks disapproved of their use and threw them into a fire, shouting "These berries are The Devil's work! 

Soon, an intoxicating aroma rose from the flames as the flesh of the berries burned away and the seeds inside began to roast. The remaining beans were quickly pulled from the flames and thrown into a nearby jug of water to stop them smouldering. 

Later its said the Monks began to drink the water and this allowed them to stay awake during the long evenings of prayer. Soon word spread of the wonder-tonic and the brew was no longer seen as the work of the Devil, but devine intervention...?


In 2006, brothers Asefa and Mulugeta Dukamo founded Daye Bensa, a coffee grower and exporter in Ethiopia. Daye Bensa exports coffee from its farm, in the Shantawene Village, as well as from “out-growers” (or smallholders) in three villages: Shantawene, Karamo and Bombe.


Daye Bensa owns 42 washing stations across three districts, and they handle all the coffee they export. Its three farms, in Kaffa and Sidamo, are Organic, UTZ, Rain Forest Alliance and C.A.F.E. Practices certified. In 2020 Deya Bensa placed 7th in the Cup of Excellence.


Each year they host an “Out-Growers” Day. Nearly 1,000 farmers gather to celebrate their harvests and to receive second payments for their coffee cherry contributions. Daye Bensa additionally rewards the top three farmers from each of the three villages with certificates and premiums, recognising them for consistently delivering high-quality cherries.


Going forward, Daye Benesa is hoping to work with more farmers, to particularly encourage women farmers and to work with Hawassa University, to help students perform research to improve coffee quality.

To find out more about our coffee, click the links below: