Where in the world?
Bababudangiri in the South Indian Western Ghats
1280 – 1417 MASL
Cocoa Powder, Black Pepper, Nutmeg
What’s the story?
If you are after that big old warming, heavy bodied and delightfully spiced kind of coffee then this one is your thing. The dry grounds give off loads and loads of spice notes that we simply couldn’t list them all. Think of black pepper, nutmeg, clove all toasted in a pan and you’re getting there. The body of this coffee is immense. It almost feels like drinking thick hot cocoa, with the viscosity of the brew so dense a few of us thought one of us had slipped some syrup into the cups! The spice theme carries on throughout with a beautifully balanced and lingering flavour profile that just works. Soft hints of gingerbread and a soft acidity level make this one an absolute comfort coffee, ideal for when the nights draw in and the weather is getting chilly!
These are the sorts of coffee that form our Mystere et Prestige range, big, heavy and chocolatey with unique origin characteristics. We have had some great ones from Sumatra and Papua New Guinea, and we are now discovering some fantastic coffees from India.
Traditionally, small holders sell their coffee to middle men meaning it disappears into massive regional lots and they are paid bare minimum, so there has been little incentive to focus on quality, with volume being the priority as the way of maximising the return for the years work.
However, In recent years various projects have focused on improving quality and traceability. One of these is the EKA project from Olam Specialty, which is focused in the Karnataka region, where coffee was first introduced to India, so a great place to start a flavour revolution!
At 117 Hectares, Ratnagiri is in the top 1% of Karnataka estates by size, they are family owned and they are pioneering India’s drive towards world class specialty coffee.
The estate is situated near Chikmagalur, one of world’s top biodiversity hotspots. The coffee is grown under three levels of forest canopy, with insanely rich biodiversity and vast experience from the team growing, harvesting and processing the coffee. For all intents and purposes Ratnagiri Estate is an organic/biodynamic farm and also maintains official Rainforest Alliance Certification.
After picking, the coffee is de-pulped leaving some mucilage and is then dried on raised beds for 16 to 20 days,where further sorting and preparation takes place for the microlots. The coffee is raked and turned every 3 hours from the first day of drying, and covered in the evenings.
FILTER: French Press
Time: 4 minutes
Flavours we found: We tasted an incredibly clean cup with flavours of light caramel, nutmeg and clementine.
Yield: 40ml out
Time: 30 seconds
Flavours we found: We tasted rich, warming and sugary. Aromas of roasted chesnuts combine with flabours of blood orange, cocoa powder, brown sugar and a hint of whiskey.