Old Tavern Coffee Estate

Moon Author's Review

The Twymans grow some of the best Blue Mountain Coffee. The estate is run by David, son of owners Dorothy and the late, great coffee farmer Alex Twyman.

The Twymans bought their property in 1968 and persevered through extreme challenges in obtaining a Coffee Board License, which allows them to sell directly to their customers and market their beans as "Blue Mountain Coffee," a coveted trademark belonging to Jamaica, just as Champagne belongs to France. The Twymans take a natural approach on the farm, limiting use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides while employing traditional fermentation and sun-drying processes. The unique climatic conditions found at the Twymans’ Estate requires a longer maturation period--the berries remain on the trees for 10 months due to the near-constant cloudy mist blanketing the mountains around Hardwar Gap.

Three different roasts are produced from the Twymans’ beans: medium, medium dark (Proprietors’ Choice), and dark roast. Peaberry beans produce an additional variety. Peaberry is an unusual bean, where one side of the normally paired beans does not develop. As a result, a smaller bean with a unique mild flavor develops. It is not fully understood what causes peaberry beans to grow this way. The peaberry beans are carefully separated and sold as a distinct variety prized by many coffee connoisseurs.

The Twymans’ choice beans are served at Norma’s on the Terrace, Suzie’s, Cannonball Cafè, and at Strawberry Hill. Kraft Cottage in Village Plaza retails Twyman’s coffee, and it is sold directly on the farm, at the Kingston office, and online for best value at US$30 per pound plus shipping (for orders write to oldtaverncoffee@kasnet.com).

"Never put coffee in the freezer, because it will take on the flavor of anything that’s in there," advised Alex Twyman, who had a wealth of information on anything to do with the precious bean. There is no charge for a guided tour of the gorgeous estate; instead, guests are encouraged to show their appreciation by buying a pound or two of coffee before departing.


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