Coffee is the savior of tired moments to drink. That attracts us with fragrance and taste. Coffee has been in our lives for decades, about 1200 - 1300 years, but it feels as if it was one of the oldest drinks in human history. So much history about coffee that is grown around 70 countries. In recent years interest in coffee has also increased in every modern country, but how many of us really know what we are drinking? How many coffee bean types are there and what are their characteristics? Let us offer you an exclusive look into the coffee types.
When talking about coffee, people think it is about the fruit from one particular species of tree, the Coffea arabica. Arabica is the coffee that is the most produced each year. It is grown in dozens of countries between the Southern Tropic (South of Ecuador) and Northern Tropic (North of Ecuador). Arabica isn’t the only coffee species, however, there are over 120 different species of coffee, but only one other is grown in any quantity and this is the Coffea canephora, which is the Robusta coffee.
Types of Coffee Beans
The first coffee trees to be cultivated came from Ethiopia, and the Typica type is still one of the most used today. Since then many other varieties were found, some of them are natural mutations and others are results of cross-breeding. Some types have an explicit unique taste, while others adopt their characteristics from the terroir in which they are grown. The taste of coffee beans can be influenced by the way they are cultivated and the way they are processed after harvest.
Almost every coffee consumer may have heard about the Arabica coffee tree, but only a few consumers are aware that there are many different varieties of the Arabica coffee tree. Most of the time the world’s coffee always has been traded by origin. But a particular quantity may have come from many farms and by the time of export, no one knows which varieties the contributing producers had grown, only the part of the world that it has come from. However, slowly this is starting to change. But we still barely know something about how much impact the variety of the tree can have on the taste of the cup of coffee.
Please note that the descriptions of the following types will not include any specific notes on taste unless there is something really specific and distinct. So many aspects can influence cup quality and, coupled with the lack of organized research it would become really misleading to make any bold in these descriptions.
Varieties And Varietals
First of all, let’s clarify the terms ‘variety’ and ‘varietal’. Varieties are genetically distinct alternations of a single species. For example, Coffea arabica, in these paragraphs may be shown with different characteristics in the tree structure, leaves, or fruit. ‘Cultivar’ is another synonym to use here.
While ‘Varietal’ should be used when referring to a specific detail of a variety. For example, when referring to the production of one farm, it would be correct to announce that it was one hundred percent Bourbon varietal.
This is considered the initial variety from which all other varieties have converted or been genetically selected. The Dutch were the first to spread coffee for commercial purposes all around the globe and they used this variety. The cherries are usually red, and the beans within them are green after the harvest. Typica is capable of producing an excellent cup quality, though it has a relatively small yield compared to the other varieties. It may be also known by several different names like criollo, Sumatra, and Arabigo.
This was the first natural mutation of Typica. It got its name by its provenance, because it occurred on the Réunion is, which was called Bourbon at the time. This type has the highest yield among the Typica. Many specialists in the industry declare that it has a distinctive sweetness, which makes it so prized and desirable.
There are numerous variations in the color of the fruit: red, yellow, and occasionally orange. This variety was grown very widely in the past but nowadays it’s replaced by mutated higher-yielding varieties. This adjustment happened at a time when the market had not yet matured enough to reward with a sufficient price to compensate for the lower yields.
This is also a natural hybrid mutation of the Typica and Bourbon. This variety was named after the place in Brazil where it was discovered in the 1940s, which means “New World '' in Portuguese, which is the most used language in that territory. It is grown for its advantages like its high yield, strength, and disease resistance, which is a highly required attribute. Also, it can grow in altitudes like 1,000–1,200m (3,300–3,900 feet) which are common in Brazil.
This is an onward mutation of the Bourbon variety, which was also discovered in Brazil in 1937. It also yields relatively high, though it has the ability for overbearing. What happens where the tree produces more fruit than it can endure and succumbs to die-back. However, with good farm management, it can be avoided, and the farmers remain with a high yield.
The variety has been highly popular in Colombia and Central America. This type has both red and yellow variations and it is a low-growing variety, often referred to as dwarf or semi-dwarf. It’s successful due to the good cup quality and the factor that they are easier to pick by hand.
It's a cross between Caturra and Mundo Novo made by the Instituto Agronômico de Campinas in Brazil started in the 1950s. It was chosen as it consolidated the smaller attributes of Caturra with the yield and quality of Mundo Novo. Like Caturra, there are red and yellow assortments.
One of the most effectively created assortments, Maragogype is a type of Typica, first found in Brazil. It is remarkable, and very popular, because of the uncommonly massive size of its beans. The tree likewise has especially large leaves but a moderately low yield. This coffee type is frequently alluded to as 'Elephant' or 'Elephant Bean' coffee because of its size. The fruits are usually red.
A currently valued assortment, SL-28 was made in Kenya by Scott Laboratories during the 1930s, chosen from a dry spell safe variety from Tanzania. The organic products are red when ready, and the beans are outstandingly bigger than usual. This assortment is viewed as fit for creating a cup with an unmistakable natural product flavor, frequently portrayed as a blackcurrant. It is very powerless to espresso leaf rust and performs better at higher elevations.
This assortment was chosen from French Mission Bourbon, an assortment taken back to Africa from Bourbon (Réunion) and first showing up in Tanzania and afterward in Kenya. It is likewise fit for particular natural product enhancements yet is commonly viewed as sub-par compared to SL-28 in cup quality. It is similarly vulnerable to espresso leaf rust, and the natural products mature red.
Geisha Or Gesha
There is some discussion over the right name for this assortment, however 'Geisha' is all the more customarily utilized. Geisha is a town in western Ethiopia and, while the variety was brought to Panama from Costa Rica, it is accepted as the origin point to be Ethiopian. The assortment is considered to create outstandingly sweet-smelling/flower cups, and the interest for it has driven up costs lately.
It had picked up outstanding quality and prevalence drastically since 2004 when one Panamanian ranch, Hacienda La Esmeralda, entered opposition with a Geisha parcel. The coffee was so unordinary and particular that it pulled in an amazingly high offer of $21/lb at sell-off. This record offer was beaten in 2006 and 2007, coming to $130/lb – almost one hundred times more than a usual grade coffee. This has since supported numerous makers in Central and South America to plant this assortment.
Pacas is a characteristic change of Bourbon, found in El Salvador in 1949 by the Pacas family. It has red leafy foods, low-developing propensity makes picking simple. Its cup quality is viewed as like Bourbon and is along these lines alluring.
Named after the town in Costa Rica where it was found, this is another regular change of Bourbon that, similar to Pacas, shows dwarfism. It is as of now being reproduced to deliver exceptional returns, and it is equipped for amazing cup quality. The organic products mature red.
This is a combination of the Pacas and Maragogype assortments, made in El Salvador in 1958. Like Maragogype, it has incredibly huge leaves, products of the soil beans. It likewise has particular cup attributes that can be emphatically depicted. It can pose a flavor like chocolate and organic products, however, it additionally has the limit concerning terribly homegrown, onion-like cups. It also has red fruits.
Named after a grower who dealt with a determination program in India during the 1920s, this assortment was created for its protection from espresso leaf rust, however, it very well may be annihilated by new strains of the malady.
It was also created in India. This is a combination of Kent and S288, a more established choice impervious to espresso leaf rust. It is broadly planted in India and Indonesia, even though it is currently considered to have lost quite a bit of its obstruction.
Wild Arabica Varieties
The vast majority of the above assortments are hereditarily very comparable, as they all originate from one variety, Typica. A significant number of the coffee trees developed in Ethiopia, in any case, are not chosen cultivars, however, are indigenous treasure assortments that likely result from cross-rearing between various species just as multiple assortments. Little work has been done as such far to inventory or investigate the decent hereditary variety and cup nature of these wild assortments.