Location at Origin: Kindeng, Wahgi Valley, Western Highlands
Farm(s): Various Small Holder
Processing: Fully washed and dried at a central dry mill.
Altitude: 1,400-1,800 MASL
Roast Level: Medium-Dark (FC)
Cupping Notes: Cocoa, Caramel, Sweet & Tart
"Kunjin is a centralized plantation mill that purchases cherry from smallholder farmers in the highlands. With central milling and drying, our partners on the ground control quality at the processing level — day lots are cupped and separated to build our containers and lots which are microlot worthy are processed separately.
Kunjin comes from smallholders between 1400–1,800 meters, from the Wahgi Valley in Western Highlands, in close proximity to the town of Mount Hagen. Coffee is being processed in a leased vintage John Gordon–brand wet mill in an old plantation. Owning a mill or property in PNG is risky, and it could take years to establish a reputation of trust with the local tribes. Even if you make a deal, there is always risk of losing it, as the tribe could simply change their mind on the deal once they see the mill is profitable.
Personally, I'm really excited to work with PNG as a coffee-producing country, being culturally and socially as foreign as it gets. During my first visit in 2012, my luggage was left in Jakarta and I wouldn't get it back until my way out of PNG. I took a cab to Vision City Mega Mall, in the capital city of Port Moresby, and bought a Quicksilver T-shirt for $50 USD—and there weren't many options. The Highlander Hotel in Mount Hagen will run you $300 USD per night with cockroaches in your room, and you might get the suite over the kitchen—good luck sleeping! On the other hand, locals are living off their land with very little income. One of the reasons of such disparity is that there is a big mining boom as we speak, where multinationals are extracting valuable minerals and have brought local prices up as mining is very resource-intensive.
PNG is another one of those countries which has great potential, but it's still far away from hitting its peak. It has heirloom varieties and great altitude, but its social and economic problems makes it extremely hard to achieve top-quality coffee. We are happy, nonetheless, with the quality we are seeing this year, and cleanliness in the cup is one of the biggest attributes for these. As always, we will push the bar for better quality!"
— Piero Cristiani