Brian Leahy – Korgua Estate – Tambul-Nebilyer – Papua New Guinea
$10.50 – $15.75
Region: Tambul-Nebilyer District, Western Highlands, Papua New Guinea
Producer: Brian Leahy
Farm: Korgua Estate
Altitude: 1200-1300 MASL
Varietal: Bourbon & Typica
Process: Fully Washed
Notes: Apricot, Tamarind, Brown Sugar, persimmon
This is a bright, zesty, and refreshing Papua New Guniea. It’s quite clean and really a sparkling example of some of the best coffee Papua New Guinea has to offer.
This coffee is sourced from the Nebilyer Valley. Coffees cultivated here are typically grown on 1-2 hectares of land by indigenous smallholder farmers, but this lot is grown on Korgua estate, among the first established on the island in the early parts of the 20th century by immigrants and colonizers. Prior to the twentieth century, coffee was not an important crop on the island, despite its proximity to other coffee growing Pacific islands.
The country of Papua New Guinea comprises the eastern half of the New Guinea island (the western half is part of the country of Indonesia) that rests like a disjoined puzzle piece off the northern coast of Australia. Commercial coffee production began in earnest in the region in the late 1920s, and is now the country’s second most important agricultural export after palm oil.
Korgua, and the local Kuta mill, are managed by Brian Leahy, the son of the farm’s founder, Dan, who was an early Australian explorer. Along with his adventurous sibling, Mick, the Leahy brothers chronicled in photos and on film Europeans’ first interactions with the indigenous highland population in the early 1930s. The farm and mill, built on a “neutral zone” has the distinction of creating a common ground for the Ulga and Kolga tribes, whose relationships have not always been amicable.
Korgua is cultivating classic heirloom varieties Bourbon and Typica. Both trace their origins back to Yemen, but Typica was the very first to leave the Arabian Peninsula. By the end of the 17th century, the Dutch were successfully cultivating their first coffees on the western coast of India, using coffee lifted from Yemen – either by the Sufi Baba Budan or merchant Pieter van der Broocke. From there, they sent cuttings that would sprout in Java around the turn of the 18th century, and would thereafter spread throughout the cultivating world. Not long after, the French would also secure Yemeni coffee, and plant trees on the island of Bourbon, now called Reunion. Bourbon would be used to replace much of the Western Hemisphere’s Typica stock beginning around the middle of the 19th century, and would also be used to populate much of East Africa’s fields by the beginning of the 20th century. Typica tends to have long, narrow seeds and the tree’s shape is conical; Bourbon, by contrast, has more rounded leaves, berries, and overall tree shape.
12 Ounces, 8 Ounces
Whole Bean, Espresso, Aeropress, Pour Over/ Drip, French Press