What is a peaberry? Hearing that word the first time can sound confusing or foreign to those who don't know coffee. Yet the wave of peaberry coffee is coming, and you should be prepared for it. To get you ready, we have to take a step back and understand how a coffee bean is made. Coffee is the pit of a cherry fruit from a Coffea plant, known as stone fruit, which usually has two seeds. These two seeds are large and flat. However, a Peaberry seed, also known as caracolillo (little snail) for its round shape, only has a single seed in the pit of the cherry and is smaller than the standard coffee bean.
Peaberry isn't exclusive to the arabica or robusta plant. Both can produce peaberry beans. Peaberry isn't also connected to a specific roasting method or a particular way of brewing. It is just the single round seed produced from the coffee cherry tree. This is rare, and to give you perspective, approximately 5% of the world's coffee beans are peaberry beans. You can get peaberry coffee from all over the globe, yet Brazil, Honduras, Indonesia, Kenya, Kona, and Tanzania (in alphabetical order) tend to produce the most. Any beans you see in the store labeled "peaberry" are carefully hand-picked and selected for purchase. This is why some feel that these are some of the world's most expensive and best coffee beans.
Some people believe that peaberry's flavor is better since the bean is denser and has more sugars than the ordinary coffee bean. There is debate on the best way to brew peaberry to experience their flavors fully. The french press seems to be the preferred way to fully experience a peaberry bean. However, a pour-over is prepared well, and an experienced cafe can serve an excellent peaberry espresso. Just make sure that you use quality water when brewing, as it can affect the taste.
Learning about coffee shouldn't be difficult or complicated
We created Simple Coffee Culture to help you navigate the coffee landscape.