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When you mention Hawaiian coffee, people immediately think of the region of Kona, which produces some of the most esteemed coffee in the world thanks to its elevation, tropical climate, and rich volcanic soil.
On our recent trip to Maui, I needed to learn more about that island’s unique coffee, and what it has to offer. At the MauiGrown Coffee company, I learned all about Hawaiian coffee’s best-kept secret: Maui Mokka.
Coffee originated in Ethiopia. From there, it was exported to the world through a Yemeni port by the name of Mokka. To this day, “Mokka coffee” or as part of the popular Mocha Java blend, is named after this port through which coffee reached the world. Over time, it was exported and grown in other parts of the world, giving us the many different origins that we now enjoy.
Today, MauiGrown Coffee isn’t just growing coffee in an excellent environment – they are growing specifically the Mokka variety of coffee that originated in Ethiopia.
Referred as their “champagne of coffee” due to the small, roundish beans, it produces subtle flavors, pleasant acidity, and chocolate tones with hints of wine and fruit. Due to its size much smaller than the average coffee bean, it is often mistaken for a peaberry. In the image above, Jeff Ferguson of MauiGrown is showing me the screening tool used to separate the smaller Mokka bean from other beans.
When we first arrived at MauiGrown Coffee, we were treated to a tasting of the four different varieties grown on Maui, including the Maui Mokka coffee in regular form and in peaberry form. As you can see by the picture to the left, it didn’t make it any easier to nail down which specific coffees we ended up buying :).
In a recent press release, MauiGrown announced record harvest, with the Maui Mokka specifically leading the charge as its star variety. Last year, they all but sold out of the variety, with roasters around the world anxiously waiting for the 2012 harvest.
Ironically, when I brought it up with my friend David Cook, owner of London, Canada’s Fire Roasted Coffee Company, he mentioned that they had previously imported the Maui Mokka into their roastery, and that they had an order in the pipeline for another shipment.
Check out MauiGrown’s website, to learn more about all of the coffees that they grow, roast, and sell.
Check out MauiGrown’s online store, where you can order their Maui Mokka coffee either in regular form or in peaberry form. As a big fan of peaberry coffees, I recommend that you order a pound of each to decide for yourself which you like best. I can’t wait to tear into the pound of each that I bought and brought home!
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