Kenya - Karatina Peaberry
Tasting notes: Black currant, blackberry, florals, pear, sweet, syrupy
Produced by: Barichu Farmers Cooperative Society
Region: Nyeri County, Mathira Division
Varietal: SL28 SL34, some Ruiru 11
Processing: Fully washed
Situated within eyesight of the rural center of Karatina is the coffee factory (Kenyan washing station) that shares the same name. It is an older factory, in operation since 1957. It has been part of the Barichu Farmers Cooperative Society since the mid 1990’s, Barichu also operates other distinguished factories like Gatomboya, Gaturiri, and Karindundu. There are 972 active farmers, 425 women and 547 men, with an average farm size so small it is measured by trees rather than land size. Average trees per farmer is 250.
Nyeri County is certainly not unknown to the specialty coffee industry. It is actually quite fascinating how consistently Nyeri offers some of the best coffee in the world. This is the second year we have offered coffee from the Karatina Factory, but this time we were able to procure a Peaberry grade lot. Most of the time a single coffee cherry contains two beans, but with peaberries only one bean develops in the cherry, creating a dense, more flavorful, and ultimately more desirable coffee. Peaberries are filtered out from their twin counterparts and sold as premium.
The Karatina has really grabbed our attention this year. It is so good. Huge intense, juicy black currant and blackberry notes, accompanied by a host of other flavors – florals, pear, orange, some savory character. Add in a big syrupy mouthfeel and sweet finish and this coffee really sings! We simply love Kenyan coffee, and this one is the perfect way to end a season of some great ones.