A Guide to Kenyan Coffee Beans: Exploring the Different Types of Roasts

Kenya is renowned for producing some of the world’s finest specialty coffee beans. The country’s unique climate, high altitudes, and meticulous cultivation and processing methods contribute to the exceptional quality of Kenyan coffee. Here are some common types of coffee beans from Kenya:

1. Kenyan AA

Kenyan AA coffee beans are the highest grade of coffee produced in Kenya. These beans are carefully selected based on their large size and high density. Kenyan AA beans are known for their vibrant acidity, full body, and complex flavor profiles. They often exhibit notes of bright citrus, blackcurrant, berry, and sometimes floral or wine-like characteristics.

2. Kenyan AB

Kenyan AB coffee beans are the second-highest grade of coffee produced in Kenya. They are slightly smaller in size compared to AA beans but still offer exceptional quality and flavor. Kenyan AB beans have a similar flavor profile to AA beans, with a bright acidity, rich body, and fruity and floral notes.

3. Kenyan Peaberry

Kenyan Peaberry beans are unique because they consist of a single, rounded bean within the coffee cherry instead of the usual two flat-sided beans. These beans are carefully sorted and prized for their concentrated flavors and distinct characteristics. Kenyan Peaberry beans often exhibit a bright and juicy acidity, with flavors of blackcurrant, citrus, and sometimes a hint of wine-like complexity.

4. Kenyan Elevation Coffees

Kenya produces coffee from various elevations, each with its own flavor profiles. Coffees grown at higher elevations, such as the Nyeri and Kirinyaga regions, often have pronounced acidity, intense fruitiness, and complex flavors. On the other hand, coffees grown at lower elevations, such as Machakos or Thika, may have a milder acidity, fuller body, and exhibit flavors of cocoa, nuttiness, and sweetness.

These are just a few examples of the coffee beans produced in Kenya. The country’s coffee industry is known for its exceptional quality, distinct flavors, and rigorous grading systems. Kenyan coffee is highly regarded in the specialty coffee market for its bright acidity, vibrant flavors, and the unique terroir that contributes to its outstanding cup characteristics.