Madagascar vanilla planifolia comparison

[singlepic=324,320,240,,center]L to R: Amadeus Super Long & Regular, Vanilla Products USA, Beanilla (click for larger image)

Click here for the full Madagascar Planifolia vanilla bean comparison gallery.

Nearly every vendor has a Madagascar origin vanilla bean. A comparison demonstrates the extent to which vanilla grown in the same country can carry. Why are they so different? I imagine ripening, curing, and handling all play a role. Your thoughts?

Grade A gourmet beans should be moist and oily, with the approximate color and shine of a raisin. The pictures are a bit shiny, but you can notice the darker color of the Grade ‘A’ bean and the softer flesh (as can be seen in the bisection pictures). The Amadeus Super-Long Madagascar and Madagascar are also very ‘plump’ or ‘fat’ beans, while the Vanilla Products USA beans were a bit thin and flat.

[singlepic=323,320,240,,center]Beanilla Madagascar Planifolia (click for larger image)

It’s fairly easy to spot lower-quality (extract) beans. Grade B extract beans should be drier and less attractive. The major indicators are an overly-dry skin that doesn’t flex well. If you bend a so-called “gourmet” bean and it breaks, this is a bad sign. The broken bean pictured below is a good example of this. It has plenty of caviar and flavor, but doesn’t meet my standards of Grade A beans. Fine for making extract, though.

[singlepic=319,320,240,,center]Bad Amadeus “Regular” Vanilla Bean (click for larger image)

The broken bean is a Grade A Regular-Sized Madagascar bean from Amadeus Trading. I am convinced this is an isolated incident. Glenn at Amadeus provided fantastic service and replaced these beans with some very nice “Super-Long Madagascar” beans. This is further confirmed by instructables member cdrivanova’s Flickr photo set that shows some nice regular-sized Madagascar beans from Amadeus. Except for a couple regular-sized Madagascars, the beans from Amadeus were all very nice. I’m convinced that a few dried old beans went out from the bottom of the box during the busy Christmas season.

[singlepic=325,320,240,,center]Vanilla Products USA (L) Amadeus “Regular” (R) (click for larger image)

Click here for the full Madagascar Planifolia vanilla bean comparison gallery.

6 Responses to “Madagascar vanilla planifolia comparison”

  1. michel giusti says:

    we are a society based in france and we are looking for a partner in america who can sell our madagascar vanilla beans

    our price for a size of 13 to 17 cm is between 28 and 45 euros a kilogram depending of the quantity

    our price for a size of 18 to 22 cm is between 38 and 58 euros a kilogram depending of the quantity

    we still have saffron from iran, morocco and india,

    we have truffles and matcha green tea but our main activity is to sell vanilla beans

    thanks you for your answer

    monsieur giusti

  2. Brian says:

    Michel, your post(by the time I read it) is several years old but I would be interested in distributing your beans. Please provide updated prices and what volume you would require for a partner. Also let me know grades and price variation within the grades. Just e-mail me!

  3. scholl says:

    Hi Michel Giusti
    can u please post ur updated post if u still looking for requirements specified in your previous 2009 mail….and updated prices

  4. Ben says:

    So how were did the vanilla beans from Vanilla Products USA compare in flavour?
    I was thinking of getting some from their ebay site.
    The Amadeus one’s are ridiculously expensive to ship to Canada (unless their checkout/site just isn’t configured properly to give a fair shipping estimate).

  5. Ben says:

    Ohh, i see you have vendor reviews too. That’s good. Beanilla offers affordable shipping to Canada as well.

  6. Anna says:

    Mr Giusti do you have an email so that I can reach you?

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.