No photo could ever do justice to the estate of Veer Attikan. Set in a valley at high altitude, it is home to both a tiger reserve and a national park. Without a permit, you cannot drive through this land of lush, mystical wonder. Of course, the obligatory bumpy, windy drive starts the trip; if you want the best, that’s part of the parcel.
Walking through the coffee forest which is shaded by silver oaks and native fig trees, you can hear a thousand birds singing in concert, and it’s all just for you! So many animals live here — tigers, leopards, elephants, warthogs, bears, bison and deer to name just a few. The estate is also home to hundreds of flora species, including over 150 varieties of orchid. It is breathtaking beautiful.
We were lucky enough to see the coffee get picked and processed. The juicy red cherries are washed and the parchment coffee is placed on raised drying beds, to dry in the cool winds that flow through the range.
Veer Attikan coffee is grown on different sections of the farm depending on the soil/shade preferences of each variety. Black granite rocks in varying sizes are scattered around the estate and they help the topsoil to remain in place and give the coffee the nutrients it needs. The trees look healthy and magnificent, their leaves are in beautiful condition and the cherries are super plump and juicy as they are picked.
Having never fully appreciated Indian coffee before, when we cupped some samples at Sunalini Menon’s Coffeelab in Bangalore, I was pleasantly surprised that the coffee was delicious, with a number of standouts on the table. I can’t wait for the coffee to land in Australia so I can drink more and share it with you!