Kenya Mahiga Peaberry


In some ways, our final Kenya of the 2020 harvest has been a two year wait. When we visited Kenya in 2019, a peaberry lot from Mahiga Factory was one of our favorites, but Phil & Sebastian in Canada (great roasters who have been working with Othaya for years, and earn some well-deserved seniority) had first dibs on that coffee. This year we're excited to give Mahiga some time to shine here at Huck! 

Othaya Farmers Cooperative Society is a union of cooperatives in Kenya's famed Nyeri county, and Mahiga is one of the 17 factories (Kenya coffee-speak for these first-tier cooperatives) that make up the larger group. All in all, approximately 10,000 coffee growers make up Othaya FCS, 400 of whom deliver their coffee to Mahiga, where it is washed in the traditional Kenyan style, and dried slowly on raised beds. 

We’re psyched on Othaya in large part because the society also manages its own dry milling and quality control. While many other factories deliver their coffee to foreign-owned dry mills, Othaya has its own cupping lab and dry mill in Nyeri, so the factories get feedback and have a bit more control over whether their coffees are sold directly to buyers like Huck, or go to auction. Everyone we met at Othaya was great, but it's worth saying that David, who runs the Othaya lab and mill, is the man.  Furthermore, Othaya and a few other Cooperative Societies export their coffee collectively as Kenyan Cooperative Coffee Exporters. Kenyan owned, Kenyan operated. And the coffee’s delicious.

One of things that’s special about Kenyan coffee is size separation. Coffee mills separate their coffee by size, dividing coffees into the largest AA selections, then AB, PB (peaberry), and a few grades that we typically don’t see in specialty coffee. Some folks claim that AA is better, or that peaberries - the coffee cherries that happen to produce just one seed rather than two - are always the top. We’re not big believers that one screen size is automatically better (ABs often outperform the sexy grades), but the different grades do have different flavors, and they roast a bit differently. This year we had the chance to choose between AA and PB grades from Mahiga, and the little beans won out.

This coffee is sweet, juicy, and bright, like all our favorite Kenyas. We're tasting mandarin orange-like citrus, deep cola-like sweetness, and loads of fruit, especially currant and plum - Mahiga makes for a killer bookend to 2020 harvest Kenya.


*** for roasting schedule, shipping, receiving & additional information, please visit out Frequently Asked Questions *** 


Pictured: Joyce Wambui, one of the managers at Mahiga, and David, head of quality at Othaya FCS. 

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