Kalledevarapura Estate, meaning abode of Lord Shiva, is named after the 300-year-old Shiva temple located on estate grounds. This gorgeous Estate dates back to the late 18th century. Nestled at the foothills of Bababudangiri Hills, Chikmaglur – the birthplace of coffee in India, provides an ideal location to grow these magical beans.
Here coffee is grown under a 3-tier shade pattern consisting of old jungle trees, Fig trees, Jackfruit trees and Silver Oaks. This age-old practice not only preserves the ecological balance of region but also lends a distinctive taste to coffees. They grow Selection 795, Selection 9 and Chandragiri coffees, with experimental blocks dedicated to varietals like Caturra , Catuai , Geisha and farmer certified organic-naturally-farmed SLN 795. Harvesting carried out by trained staff, who go through four rounds of hand picking to ensure that only ripe cherries are harvested. Their processing unit has the unique flexibility to create specific flavors profiles by altering processing methods to achieve the desired flavours. From state-of-the-art wet milling machinery to varied fermentation tanks to raised beds with mechanical blowers and wet milling station provides complete flexibility in the creation of different forms of naturals, semi washed and washed coffees.
Aghora, The story of Aghora began in 2013 when Ms. Rohini Rajgopal, established an experimental 20-acre organic Arabica plot in Kerehuckloo Estate. The experimental plot is situated at the peak of an Eastern facing hill, at an elevation of 1050 to 1100 mtr located in the Chikmagalur district of the Western Ghats, close to the borders of the Bhadra forest reserve. They apply IMO certified organic manure as well as farmyard manure. Their farm is pesticide free and weeding is done manually. Starting in 2013 they were also part of a research study by the Wildlife Conservation Society that involved 187 agrofarms across the Western Ghats to examine bird and amphibian diversity across the Western Ghats.
The Western Ghats are one of the top biodiversity hotspots of the world and most of the coffee grown in India is grown on farms that border the last few remaining forest reserves. The study revealed that coffee farms have higher bird density than other agroforests. Kerehukloo was one of the first four farms in the world to receive a Wildlife Friendly Certification© through the Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network.
Balur Estate was formally started in the 1840’s by the partnership of Thomas Cannon, Col. Onslow and R.G. Allardyce. Today, it is under the responsible stewardship of fourth generation coffee planters. India is the only country that grows all of its coffee under the canopy of native trees, there by preserving the local ecosystem and maintaining its biodiversity. “Shade grown coffee” plantations harbor a diversity of plants, insects, and animals that make up the ecologically sensitive Western Ghats region. Balur estate is nestled on the slopes of the Western Ghats at over 3200-3500 feet elevation. The estate produces quality Arabica and Robusta coffee along with other crops like pepper, cocoa, nutmeg and cardamom.
Balur Estate lies amongst the Sahyadri Range of the Western Ghats, declared a UNESCO World Heritage site and home to a huge variety of flora and fauna – some unique to this part of the world. Not only has the coffee at Balur Estate always been grown in a rainforest friendly plantation, but the local traditions also embrace a deep respect for nature and a culture of co-existence with life around us. The Balur Estate management is committed to restoring and enhancing the land, water and wildlife through habitat management and wildlife conservation. Their two decades of stewardship has been about returning the land and water to its former glory, restoring what was lost. Along this journey they were blessed to have the technical expertise of entomologists Dr. A. K. Chakravarthy, and Dr. N.E. Thyagaraj. A Green Future: They have been working on conservation projects to address issues like soil erosion, nutrient runoff, pesticide drift and loss of wildlife habitats.
Ram Estate is located in Kamanur, a small village on the crest of Pulnyes(Lower Kodaikanal Hill stretch) at the latitude of ~1200 MSL. One side of the farm is bordered by a brook called Panjarathu Oodai, meaning the brook was never dry, even during the Famine. It says all about the abundance of natural resources helping the farm. And gives a warm welcome hand while entering the estate. This 4th generation coffee estate, where the coffee trees are grown under the two tire canopy from Jackfruit, Silver Oak, and Silk cotton trees. They grow SLN9-arabica coffee varietal.
Besides coffee, they cultivate Pepper, Hill Banana, and promising 3+ years of Young Avocado trees. The entire farm is maintained with a consultation of an Agronomist, with ad-hoc; specifically prepared organic fertilizer; this ensures the plants and trees get what it requires and avoids an over-do or deficient supply of nutrients. Constant efforts are taken to maintain the shades; re-plantation of ‘shade trees’ are done on a need-basis, and pruning of trees is taken care of every year to maintain the shade density. With the dedicated farm workers, coffee harvesting is done with all the pivots of best practices. From picking fully grown red cherries, cleaning, sorting, and removing floaters to drying beds. A culture of approaching the coffee with cleanliness is built among everyone in the estate, so it is followed subconsciously. With the richness of biodiversity and good presence of flora and fauna, and some most exciting birds. This humble small estate got all the gears to produce great coffee.