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What makes Papua New Guinea Coffee so special?

Jan 22, 2023 (Updated on Apr 4, 2023)

Papua New Guinea has a reputation for producing some of the highest-quality coffee in the world. Many coffee enthusiasts describe Papua New Guinea coffee as being smooth and well-balanced, with a sweet and fruity character that is highly prized. But why exactly is that?

Location, Location, Location!

Papua New Guinea is a small island country between Indonesia and Australia, and it is known for producing high-quality coffee. The country is located in the "coffee belt," an area of the world that stretches around the equator and is characterized by its warm, humid climate and rich, fertile soil. These conditions are perfect for growing coffee, and Papua New Guinea has taken full advantage of its location. The coffee plants in Papua New Guinea are grown at high altitudes, ranging from 600 to 1,800 meters above sea level. This high altitude is ideal for coffee production, as it allows the coffee plants to take in more sunlight, which helps to develop the complex flavors of the coffee beans. In addition, the high altitude also helps to reduce the risk of pests and diseases, which can be a major problem for coffee farmers in other parts of the world.


Interestingly enough, coffee has not always been in Papua New Guinea. According to Waka Coffee, its production first started in 1926 when Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee seeds were planted. By 1928, the country was ready for commercial production with a total of 18 commercial plantations established in the country. The country exports its coffee to a wide range of countries, including the United States it one of the world's largest exporters of specialty coffee, with a reputation for producing some of the highest quality beans in the world.The popularity of Papua New Guinea Coffee has grown in recent years, and it is now sought after by coffee connoisseurs around the world.

The Process

Papua New Guinea coffee is grown in the highlands of the country, which has a humid and tropical climate that is ideal for coffee production. The coffee is grown using traditional methods, and it is often processed using wet or washed methods, which results in a clean and clear flavor profile. Not sure what the wet or washed methods of processing coffee are? Let’s dive in. The wet method of coffee production involves removing the outer layers of the coffee cherry, called the pulping process, using water. This is done by passing the coffee cherries through a machine that removes the outer layers, leaving the coffee beans inside to be dried. The washed method is a variation of the wet method, in which the coffee beans are soaked in water for a period of time after the pulping process. This helps to remove any remaining bits of fruit or mucilage from the surface of the beans. The beans are then rinsed and dried. Both of these methods are used to produce high-quality coffee, and the choice of which method to use may depend on the specific growing conditions and characteristics of the coffee beans. As mentioned earlier, Papua New Guinea Coffee is often processed with these methods.

The Farmers

Currently, about 2.5 million in Papua New Guinea work in the coffee industry. The Coffee is grown by smallholder farmers, who rely on it as a major source of income. As such, they are highly invested in producing the best possible beans. They carefully tend to their plants and use sustainable farming practices to ensure that their coffee is of the highest quality.

Arabica Beans

Arabica beans are a type of coffee bean that is widely considered to be of higher quality than its counterpart, Robusta beans. Robusta beans are typically grown at lower altitudes, while Arabica beans are grown at higher altitudes. As mentioned earlier, the coffee plants in Papua New Guinea are grown at high altitudes. Arabica beans also tend to be less acidic and bitter than Robusta beans; making them highly sought after. They are usually a medium brown color, and their high oil content makes for a rich flavor. Arabica beans tend to have a strong, pleasant aroma. It is mostly described as floral, fruity, or nutty. While its strong aroma is often lost during the roasting process, it can still present itself in its finished state.

What does it Taste like?

Papua New Guinea coffee is known for its complex, sweet, and fruity flavors, with notes of berry, stone fruit, chocolate, and nut. It has a medium to full body, with a pleasant, balanced acidity that adds brightness and liveliness to the cup. Not sure what all that means? Let’s talk about what goes into how a coffee “tastes.”


Papua New Guinea coffee is known for its distinctive aroma, which is commonly described as being fruity and floral. The aroma of coffee depends on several factors, including the growing conditions, the processing method, and the roast level. Some common aroma notes associated with Papua New Guinea coffee include:

  • Berry: Papua New Guinea coffee often has berry-like aromas, such as raspberry or blackberry.
  • Stone fruit: Some Papua New Guinea coffee has aromas of stone fruits, such as plum or cherry.
  • Chocolate: Many Papua New Guinea coffee has chocolate aromas, ranging from dark chocolate to milk chocolate.
  • Floral: Some Papua New Guinea coffee has delicate floral aromas, such as jasmine or rose.
  • Nutty: Some Papua New Guinea coffee has nutty aromas, such as almond or hazelnut.
Papua New Guinea coffee has a complex and well-balanced aroma that is highly prized by coffee enthusiasts; making it a very special type of coffee.



Papua New Guinea coffee can be described as having a unique flavor profile. This is mostly due to the nutrient-dense soil. Papua New Guinea coffee is grown in an ideal location for coffee production, and it is highly sought after due to its distinctive taste. The flavor of Papua New Guinea coffee is often described as being sweet and smooth, with hints of chocolate, nuts, and fruit. The taste is often described as sweet and smooth, with hints of chocolate and nuts. Some people also detect a slight earthy flavor.


Coffee acidity refers to the bright, tangy, and fruity flavors that are present in some types of coffee. Acidity is an important characteristic of coffee, and it is often described as a positive attribute that adds depth and complexity to the flavor of the coffee. Papua New Guinea coffee is known for having a medium acidity. This gives it a bright and clean taste. Acidity is an important characteristic of coffee, and it is often considered a desirable attribute in high-quality coffee. It adds brightness and liveliness to the flavor of the coffee, and it helps to balance out the other flavors present in the cup.


The body of coffee refers to the physical sensation of weight and texture that you experience when you drink it. It is one of the key characteristics that determines the overall flavor and mouthfeel of a cup of coffee. Coffee body is often described on a spectrum, with light-bodied coffee at one end and full-bodied coffee at the other. Light-bodied coffee is typically characterized by a thin, watery texture and a delicate flavor, while full-bodied coffee has a thick, creamy mouthfeel and a bold, rich flavor. Papua New Guinea coffee is often described as having a full body, which means it has a rich and velvety texture when it is brewed.


Papua New Guinea coffee is also grown using sustainable and environmentally-friendly farming practices. Many of the farmers in Papua New Guinea have been growing coffee for generations, and they have a deep understanding of the importance of preserving the land for future generations. As a result, they use natural fertilizers and pest control methods, and they take great care to conserve water and protect the soil.


When purchasing coffee from Papua New Guinea, it is important to purchase from a trusted coffee bean supplier. At The Golden Roast, we currently offer a limited edition Papua New Guinea coffee called “Nebilyer”. It’s a medium roast, 1350 meter elevation, with notes of apricot, plum, and caramel. The beans are 100% Arabica, and fully washed. At The Golden Roast Coffee Roasters, we use only the freshest beans ethically sourced from around the globe. These beans are then roasted with care right here in Knoxville, TN. Our roasters have perfected their craft over years of practice, constantly honing their skills and knowing precisely what roast profile is perfect for each bean and how to achieve it. We take pride in our quality and strive to let our beans speak for themselves in every cup of coffee we serve.


Overall, Papua New Guinea coffee is a truly special and unique coffee, with a flavor and aroma that is highly prized by coffee enthusiasts around the world. From its ideal growing location to its sustainable farming practices and distinctive flavor profile, Papua New Guinea coffee has earned its reputation as some of the highest-quality coffee in the world.