A smooth cup of coffee with subtle notes of fig, dates, almond, and apple to round out this great bean.
Origin Notes: From the seaside city of Lae on the east coast of Papua New Guinea, the Highland Highway winds for 200 miles and climbs 5,000 feet to reach Goroka, the center of coffee cultivation for the region. In the Eastern Highlands much of the coffee is still grown on very small “garden” plots alongside household subsistence crops.
In the highlands, morning fog fills the valleys and the mountain peaks float above in the sun, the highest reaching nearly 15,000 feet. As the fog lifts, so does the chill. Clouds gather, and the afternoon warmth is often accompanied by fierce thunderstorms, which vanish as suddenly as they appear, making room for the whole cycle to start over again, an ideal climate for growing coffee.
Compared to the speed with which Europeans colonized other parts of the world, they seemed to spill over Oceania in slow motion. So, although the highlands of PNG are textbook coffee land, commercial coffee production was not established until 1928. In typical British colonial style, coffee was initially grown on plantations (though atypically planted with Blue Mountain from Jamaica).
The history of colonial New Guinea mirrors that of central Africa. Feeling left out of the general expansionist trend, Germany grabbed a portion of northern New Guinea in the late 1800’s and then lost it during WWI. The Japanese invaded PNG during WWII and the island saw fierce fighting for much of the war. For most of the 20th century, administrative responsibility for PNG and its ever-evolving configuration (and name) rested with Australia.