As ubiquitous as coffee is, it actually can only grow in very limited areas of the world, basically high on mountain slopes in the tropics and a few subtropical regions. To grow quality coffee beans – or at least quality Arabica beans – the climate needs to be the right mix of heat, humidity and rain (lots of rain, like 100-200cm every year) with an average temperature range of 20-27°C. Countries well known for coffee production include Mexico, Brazil, Colombia, Kenya and Ethiopia.
Another such place on the planet with ideal conditions to produce great tasting Arabica beans is Jamaica, but in only a small section of the island’s Blue Mountains. And guess who got to go there back at the end of April? Yep, work led me to Jamaica recently (don’t hate) where I had the pleasure of spending one afternoon touring the Craighton Estate coffee plantation, famous for growing what many consider to be among the best coffee beans (and some of the most expensive) available on the market.