Pepper is believed to originate from southern India. But some chefs, including the late Anthony Bourdain and the Michelin-starred French chef Olivier Roellinger, have been drawn to pepper produced in Cambodia, specifically in the province of Kampot. That’s where a near-ideal combination of sea, soil and climate produces a very aromatic, nuanced — and expensive — spice.
“It has a unique taste,” says Nathalie Chaboche, whose La Plantation began planting in southern Kampot seven years ago and is now one of the province’s biggest pepper producers, producing 25 tons last year, and employing 150 people full-time and another 150 as day laborers during the harvest season.
Chaboche, who is from France, has strong opinions when it comes to pepper.
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