It’s that time of year again! We are back in India for our fourth season in a row, and this time I’ve brought a travel buddy, none other than the lovely Kaya from our Australian Barista Academy in Perth. It’s her first real ‘origin trip’ and I am stoked to be able to share my love of India and the secrets of its elusive coffees with her.

I’ve become very fond of this country and have made many friends here whom I truly look forward to connecting with each year. After a whirlwind weekend in the most north eastern part of India checking out the first flush Darjeeling teas, we’ve made our way back to Bangalore to celebrate the wedding of Aksham and Chandresh, the daughter of a now dear friend of mine in coffee, Mrs Sunalini Menon.

The wedding celebration was as unique and beautiful as you would expect, and it made me nostalgic about why we come to India each year. Yes, some think India is ‘full on’, but if you look a little deeper, you can’t help but get caught up their rich, vibrant culture which is so warm and welcoming. The wedding bonus was to catch up with many now familiar friends in the coffee industry.

Our really good friends from the Naandi foundation were among those friends, of course, as well as a decent group of ‘women in coffee’ from El Salvador, Guatemala, Costa Rica, India and Norway.

It’s been a great day, but now we’re calling it a night as we set our alarms for 4:30am and get ready to catch the train up to the Chikmagalur region to visit Merthi Mountain and check on this year’s selection 9 coffee crop. We’ll spend a night on the farm in the old bungalows and then head back to Bangalore to meet up with Dean and Keith (Dean’s dad!) before heading up to Attikan Estate in the Biligiris Rangan Hills.

More to come soon …

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