New Caledonia coffee comes from – you guessed it – New Caledonia, in Island in the South Pacific. These beans came from the Domaine de Kouandji estate. Like some other pacific island coffees, this one is fairly rare, with production of just 1000 kg per year, and it has some very unique qualities to it. The first thing you’ll notice is that the beans are very small, almost half or 1/3 of the size of your average coffee bean. Another distinctive feature (one that you might not notice) is that this coffee is very low in caffeine content, less than half of the average for other Arabica varieties at about .6%.
The coffee itself is very interesting. It has a creamy, hazelnut note to both the smell of the beans and to the body of the coffee, reminiscent of very milky chocolate or gianduja. There is also a little bit of an herbal note to its finish, and since the coffee is very smooth and light bodied, it comes close to a mellow, lingering black tea finish. It also has some sweet notes in it, like dried fruit. It’s extremely drinkable black and seems like a good choice for a breakfast coffee, where it won’t be paired with foods that may overpower it.