Biligiri Rangan Hills, or Biligirs, are located to the south of the heritage city of Mysore. The name literally means 'white hills' as it is perpetually soaked in a hanging mist. The imposing mountain range is home to the 120-year-old Attikan Estate which is crucial to the development of coffee production in the area.
The pioneer behind Attikan Estate, responsible for transforming the shrubland into a ‘coffee best’, is Mr Randolph Hayton Morris. He came to the Hills in 1888, ignoring those who discouraged him from pursuing his mission. Their argument was that the area housed dangerous animals with virtually no human habitation in sight. However thanks to Mr Morris’ single-minded devotion, determination and courage to act on his convictions, Attikan today is not only a producer of specialty coffee but being flanked by a sanctuary, is wonderfully linked with its natural environment.
The name ‘Veer Attikan’ comes from the word ‘Veer’ which means valour, courage and strength — all the things exhibited by Mr Randolph Morris when turning shrub land into a coffee belt. (The current management is still in contact with the descendants of Mr Morris who live in the U.K.)
There is also another angle to the word ‘Veer’ which has had a large impact on this estate. A notorious bandit named Veerappan was wanted in the States of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu for abduction, poaching and smuggling sandalwood. He used the Biligiri Rangan Hills as one of his hideouts. After evading police for nearly two decades, he was shot dead in 2004. During his reign of terror, none of the management team visited the estate, fearing kidnap and ransom.
This is the fifth year that we have been working directly with Attikan Estate and we are very happy with the results. Not only has it renewed our interest in Indian coffees it has also inspired us to plan ways to continue to improve into the future as a partnership.
Dark Chocolate, Rye and Toasted Walnuts
|Region||Biligiri Rangan Hills|
|Farm / Farms||Attikan Estate|
|Farm Size||435 acres, 330 acres of coffee|
|Variety||S288, SLN 9, SLN 795, Catimor|
|Drying||Sun-dried on elevated trays|