India Coffee Bonanza!

Sort of. Basically, we found these new, unique India lots and they call showed up on our doorstep at one time! First off is one of the oddest, most-confounding coffees I have ever tasted! It's a rare coffee, certainly a unique experience, but you had better read the review before you take a risk on this one! It's called India Anohki Coffee, and it is a totally different species from arabica; coffea liberica. The flavors range from blueberry to barnyard: You've been warned! Next to the Anohki, the India Baba Budan - Mandelkhan Estate seems like a wall-flower of a coffee, but it's a classic India from a very high altitude estate. More rustic and wild is the India Mallali Estate "Tree-Dried Natural." Just as it says, this is not processed on a patio or mechanical dryer ... it is allowed to fully dry on the tree, and the cup has intense heavy body, fruit and chocolate. And we have a specially-selected robusta that is actually quite sweet, outstanding for your espresso blends: India Robusta - Sethuraman Estate Nirali.

I received one pound of

I received one pound of Anohki with my birthday gift roaster a year ago and actually liked it quite well by itself. But considering its price and rarity, I started throwing in about 15-20% Anohki every time I filled my grinder. Of course, I ran out long ago, and now nothing has the taste kick I'm looking for. Sure hope some more Anohki is available soon. This time I'll get several pounds. Great stuff!

I'm absolutely taken by the

I'm absolutely taken by the India Anohki Coffee (Liberica). I'm afraid that after I run out and it's no longer available from you, I will be desperately missing it's unique flavor. All I can say, is that cup of this coffee's rare intense flavor just bumped the quality of my mornings all the way to heaven.

I think the Liberica blended

I think the Liberica blended 25-75 with a dry processed Brazil might be really interesting! -Tom

Like caleb, had to try the

Like caleb, had to try the India Anohki coffea liberica even at the high price simply because of the intriguing description. Yes, just as Tom reported and like strong cheeses, one either loves it or hates it. For me, I happily savored the strong, primative flavors on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays; could hardly get it down on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. Did want to share a use I have become quite fond of, though. I have never blended Sweet Maria's beans on general principle. But, a well-meaning relative sent me some fine, green Kona beans for the holidays. Generally, I find Konas too bland for my taste buds. Then tried a blend - 75-80% Kona, remainder Liberica (separately roasted) -- and love the result most days of the week. The not-too-subtle hint of intrigue and exoticness of the Liberica is just what the Kona needs. Complex combination of flavors/aromas comes through fully even when used in latte's made with whole milk or half-and-half. Bean blending notion would work, I think, with understated beans other than Kona. Just ordered another pound of the Liberica just for such uses.

I don't believe it is a very

I don't believe it is a very dense bean. I roast it with a fairly standard curve, and slow down the roast at the end to target my exact desired DOR (degree of roast). I have had good cups with the FC roast, even a bit of second. I have had good cups with just 24 rest too, but it certainly changes after 5 days or so. The point is, it's worth trying all along the way, keeping in mind that the flavors shift a LOT on this coffee. Our older roasts became very herbal and anise/licorice flavored, whereas 24-48 hours was very berryish, fruited. It also changes as it cools in the cup. I think I scared so many people off of the Anohki experience with my "barnyard and blueberries" description that the lot has lasted longer than I thought. But unlike a lot of coffees we stock, it has improved over time (the only other lots like this are the Monsooned ones, some Robusta, and of course the intentional Aged coffees).


The Malalli tree-dried

The Malalli tree-dried natural has been very popular among people who like low-acid, full body coffees. It bears resemblance to Brazil coffees in some ways. Poco Fundo comes to mind. -Tom

The "Tree Dried Natural" is

The "Tree Dried Natural" is so smooth, low acid, etc just as the notes suggested. My wife - who adds coffee to her milk or cream because of a sensitivity to bitter - wanted to drink this cup as it was. This is one I'll try to stock up on when it's good enough for you to carry it. Thanks.

Hi, I saw Susan Oppenheims

Hi, I saw Susan Oppenheims name on here and was wodnering if this is same person I knew in Costa Rica, if so please get in touch. Sorry to go off topic!

yes, caleb - rest is key. it

yes, caleb - rest is key. it might not be your light roast. i suggest something more like 3 days or 5 days rest! i think this coffee is a little better with a drum roast, but an air roast with longer resting is about the same difference. we actually had the most remarkable cups from light roasts with long rests. the aromatics are always a bit dodgey but the cup flavors in these roasts were without taint, sweet, fruited! -tom

This coffee definitely

This coffee definitely benefits from a 24+ hour rest!

Being a sucker for anything

Being a sucker for anything you say is strange, earthy, aged or dirty, my order arrived yesterday and I brewed my first pot this morning. I love the satiny look this coffee has.

I usually have no idea what you are talking about when you describe coffee smells and tastes, but you hit the nail on the head with 'cowpies'. Not manure, but but dried grassy bovine excrement for sure. To be fair, another taster said that the blueberry notes were more prominent (but it wasn't face-in-the-blueberry-pie taste like those Harars in 2004/05 or so - can you go to Ethiopia and make that grow again, pls pls pretty pls? k thx).

I think I may have under-roasted a bit, and the Poppery II roasts fast, so shooting for a city roast, I stopped at 4:35, just through first crack. So I doubt that my experience will be the same as anyone else's. It's a little spendy for "you've got to try this but you might not like it" - but you told us about the cowpie aroma, so I'm not complaining. If you describe your next coffee as tasting like a litterbox, I'll probably buy that too.

I'm going to let it rest another day and brew again, and then try roasting a little darker. I'll keep tasting it, just not every day.

thanks for the comment,

thanks for the comment, Abhishek. Having true Specialty-level coffee available in the producing country is a key to success. it's a great wat to educate. a lot of consumers in the US are surprised that, to get a truly awful cup of coffee, just go to a country that grows it! things are changing, as you say. I do think India coffee has great diversity in flavor, and great potential that is yet to be explored. but look at these offerings, 3 micro lots that are essentially experiments in processing technique, each fetching at least $1.00 above the going price for fair trade/organic certified - not bad! And then we have the Liberica that has been very carefully processed in a way that emphasizes the unique cultivar flavor, and that is getting more than 7x fair trade price! -Tom

hi, I have been reading your

I have been reading your blog for the past six months. I will not make my comment verbose by saying good things about the blog. However, it's been your posts which have words of praise for Indian coffee, which is not usually expected for the fledgling coffee industry. It had been treated for long as a cash crop industry , efforts being focussed on the quantity ; and the effects are evident.
With your mention about such special coffees , it seems that Indian Coffee can make some mark in the amazing world of coffee. We probably have one Artisan/Micro Roasting Unit in India,based in New Delhi, India, which is trying to educate the consumers here about the great thing called coffee.I will ask these guys if they have tasted the above mentioned coffees. I aspire to be the next one with a cafe tagged along with it.
Thanks again for the informative blog.

hi tom which end of the

hi tom
which end of the barnyard?

i am sorta eager to get

i am sorta eager to get comments from anyone who has been brave enough to try the india anohki liberica. It's one of the most bewildering coffees i have ever evaluated.