The Mighty Peaberry

The peaberry is prized for the richness of its flavor. Tanzanian Peaberry is a lively, inviting coffee from the acclaimed Kilimanjaro region. Unlike the traditional coffee berries, which feature two side-by-side fertilized seeds, peaberries occur when only one of the two seeds is fertilized.

This, you may be interested to know, does not occur on every branch of every coffee plant. For this reason, Tanzanian Peaberry is one of the most meticulously harvested coffee crops in the world.

The name Tanzanian Peaberry rolls off the tongue as effortlessly as the deeply satisfying brew it produces. So much so that we assume the characteristic Peaberry producing plant is a well-established native. In fact, coffee did not grow in Tanzania originally. It was brought there by colonists, via Ethiopia, sometime in the 16th century. It was initially grown for local use. Commercial production and exportation began later, in the 19th century.

The Peaberry is generally hand-picked. It is a painstaking process of selection and sorting. Double-seeded and single-seeded berries are separated at harvest time. While the Peaberry is grown throughout Tanzania, the most renowned and productive plantations are found on the slopes of Mounts Meru and Kilimanjaro. The plantations in these regions are typically owned by independent farmers.

The climate and conditions of this particular region of Africa are especially favorable to the needs and success of the Peaberry. Three factors come into play: high altitude (4,500 to 6,000 feet), volcanic soils and humidity. Tanzanian Peaberry growers have developed a quality of farming and coffee bean that has turned the peaberry into its largest export crop.

The Peaberry’s shape is especially roast friendly. This is because the Peaberry is round, whereas double-seeded coffee berries yield flatter beans as each seed presses against the other during maturation. The Peaberry being rounder, it achieves an especially even roast. There is also the matter of the single-seed berry embodying all flavor attributes generally shared by two seeds. However, connoisseurs agree that meticulously timed harvesting and processing practices play a significant role in the quality of the Peaberry and thus the quality of the brew.

As far as Single Origin Coffees are concerned, Tanzanian Peaberry is at the top of coffee lovers’ list year after year.

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