Each pepper season, I make it a point to grow as many different varieties as possible – all in the endless search to find the tastiest possible. In that wide array of strains, there’s always one or two plants that produce some truly wild fruit. For the 2021 season, that pepper would be the Thunder Cacho Brown.

This variety is a cross between the Thunder Mountain Longhorn (for shape and size) and the Cacho Negro (for color). Most of the ripe fruit on my plant ranged 10-12 inches in length with a pencil thin width – several of them were quite twisty, turny by the time I picked them.

Thunder Cacho Brown pepper

The skin ripens to a lightly reddish brown in color with a gentle wrinkle. Inside, there resides a good number of seeds and stringy placenta that runs just about the full length of these long pods. The aroma is lightly smokey and earthy with a hint of possible heat to come. They do smell pretty darn good.

Chewing through the skin on the Thunder Cacho, you’re greeted with a surprising sweetness and fruitiness. Typically brown pods (at least the superhots that I have encountered) are earthy, sometimes bitter and with some floral traits. These fruit do bring the earthy quality, but also a wonderful fruitiness and an overall flavor profile that is quite enjoyable.

Thunder Cacho Brown pepper

The heat only really arrives as you work your way closer to the stem where the majority of the placenta lives. All told, the Thunder Cacho Brown really isn’t all that hot, eventually reaching a mild-to-medium level of burn that is mellow and enjoyable. It rises slowly to a gentle peak, lingers for a bit and then fades just as slowly. It’s allowed these to be a nice snacking pepper while I am checking on the plants during most afternoons.

The Thunder Cacho Brown has turned out to be a pleasant surprise. I’m not sure what I was expecting when I decided to grown it this year, but the fruitiness and sweetness that I have encountered with each bite has been delightful. It’s a very tasty pepper with a pretty chill level of burn that should make it an easy choice for just about any application – salsa, chopped fresh as condiment, etc.