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Your Guide to Peaberry Coffee

Your Guide to Peaberry Coffee

These days, the options for coffee are endless. With so many descriptors for coffee, its sometimes hard for the average coffee lover to keep it all straight. With terms like “certified organic” and “single-estate” that actually mean something…to terms like “premium” or “reserve” that may not mean anything at all. Today we’re dissecting a term that many people get confused by: The mysterious and extremely rare PEABERRY coffee.

So What is Peaberry?

Regular coffee beans grow with two halves facing each other inside the cherry, like hemispheres of the brain. The Peaberry grows with only one, round seed inside. Art: Marissa Quinn

Peaberry is the term used to refer to a coffee bean that is a full circular shape, as opposed to the standard coffee bean “half” shape. You see, coffee as we know it, is the seed of a fruit. Inside each fruit there are two seeds facing each other, much like the two hemispheres of the brain. The vast majority of coffee cherries are two seeds per cherry. But once in awhile, maybe only about 5% of the time, only one seed grows inside the cherry. With the absence of the other seed, the singular seed is able to grow all the way around, unimpeded by its sister seed. This closed, circular seed is called a peaberry. It is rare. It is small. It is very hard…and highly sought after. It is……Peaberry!


To be clear, peaberry is not a varietal of coffee, but an anomaly. It occurs in every growing region, in every varietal, around the world, but not every origin decides to separate it.

Separating Truth From Myths

Ok. So now we know what a Peaberry coffee bean is. But does this anomaly actually taste different? Does the taste warrant the added price? We break it down:


Claim: “Peaberry coffee is higher quality.” 

Fact, actually…and here’s why: Peaberry coffee is always hand sorted. That’s because it takes the watchful eye of an actual human to separate the rare peaberries from the normal coffee. Peaberry only accounts for about 3-5% of the entire harvest. This hand sorting takes added time and contributes to the cost for the farmer, but may produce higher scoring coffee that may taste better.

Claim: “Peaberry Coffee Tastes Better.”

Unconfirmed, though our blind cuppings at Kona Coffee & Tea this year confirm a resounding “yes.” All coffees will vary from year to year and we try to ensure a scientific approach to our tastings and evaluations of our coffees. We proudly stand behind this year’s 100% Kona Peaberry coffee as our absolute best coffee, our pride and joy. Any time you’re doing something by hand, like sorting, you’re going to get a higher quality cup. That’s a fact. And then there’s bean density…

Claim: “Peaberry coffee is more dense.” 

Fact. Any good roaster knows that its all about bean density, or hardness…and Peaberry coffee is, by structural definition, a more dense bean. Denser coffee will roast slower and more evenly, and is known to have higher sugar content and acidity. Both contribute to flavor in coffee, so in this aspect, it could actually be sweeter…

Claim: “Peaberry coffee is sweeter.” 

Unconfirmed. Some will claim that Peaberry coffee is sweeter because the sugars were sent to only one seed and not the two. We cannot confirm this. In our blind cuppings of our Single Estate 100% Kona Peaberry from this year, however, we can confirm an exceptionally smooth, sweet cup with buttery, chocolate notes. 

Try the Kona Coffee & Tea - 100% Kona Peaberry for yourself!

Because of the extremely small lot size, this coffee may not always be available and is our first to sell out. Secure your bag today or sign up for our coffee club subscription to reserve your coffee. We have a very limited supply.

100% Kona • Single Estate • Full-City roast (between Medium & Dark) for optimal flavor • Hand sorted • LIMITED STOCK • Peaberry makes up only 3-5% of the total harvest • Small batch roasted daily • Packaged and shipped fresh

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