I assume you are a great coffee fanatic, and that's why you are here to know in-depth about it. First and foremost, I want to tell you - you are awesome! Because I believe only awesome people like coffee.
And they don't just sit and drink without having any will to know what the actual heck they are drinking. As a coffee lover, I do believe you have your personal preference in flavor and taste. So do I, to be honest, and I can't help to admire the beauty of Brazilian coffee.
Anyway, let's get to the business. In this article, we will talk about how do coffees around the world differ in taste?
The History of Coffee
To know the history of coffee, we have to go back to the year of 850 CE and possibly earlier.
This famous drink first emerged in the kingdom of Sheba, which is situated in Yemen and Ethiopia. There's an interesting story behind it; once an Ethiopian farmer observes that his goat suddenly became energetic and active after devouring the coffee berries.
Some historians claim that drinking coffee started in the 15th century in the Sufi monasteries of Yemen. Then it got spread into Median and Mecca and reached South India, Middle East, Turkey, Northern Africa, and Persia by the 16th century.
After that, it started to become available in the Balkans, Italy, and other parts of Europe. Thomas Jefferson once quoted, "Coffee- the favorite drink of the civilized world." Now, let's look at how it became available in the world’s major regions.
You cannot compare Brazil to anywhere else when it comes to the quality of coffee. They are one of the world's largest producers of coffee. In 2015 they produced 36.89 million bags of coffee; each weighs 60kgs. Their coffee gets prepared in three ways wet (washed), dry (natural), and semi wash (pulp natural).
The natural one is just way beyond compliment. After picking up the coffee cherries, they dry those as they are without taking off mucilage or skin.
The process is complicated to get done without damaging the beans. In Brazilian coffee, chocolate and spice flavors are very popular and common. These coffees can leave an everlasting impression in your mouth.
In Kenya, most coffee is prepared by following the wet method to provide you the best quality possible. They remove the sugary coating on the beans through a fermentation process and, that's how they become dried.
Most of the Kenyan coffee comes without shade which makes their coffee much savory and sweeter. What makes Kenyan coffee special is its high acidity, rich body, delightful aroma, and intense flavor.
You would be surprised to know that coffee beans in Kenya grow 14,000 to 20,000 meters high above the ground. For this reason, Kenyan coffee has got Strictly Hard Bean (SHB) status and Strictly High Grown (SHG) status.
Talking about Central America, the first picture most people get in their mind is Guatemala and Costa Rica. There will be a big catastrophe in the global coffee market if this region stops supplying coffee. The central American area is famous for producing clean and bright coffees.
But the flavors that Mexico, Guatemala, and Nicaragua deliver are not that sweet. You will also find some other flavors in this coffee, such as fruits and nuts. Fruit flavors taste excellent with spice and cocoa flavors.
The world's first working coffee farm has been built in Panama. There's a hotel surrounding this 500-acre private reserve. You will get an amazing coffee tour and enjoy the view of the coffee corps while taking a sip of a mouthwatering cup of coffee when visiting this place.
Speaking of South American Coffee, the first name that pops up in our mind is Columbian coffee. And that makes sense as they belong to the top three coffee-producing countries in the world.
If you ever get to taste their coffee, I can assure you it would be quite impossible for you to forget the taste and flavor. South American environment and climate is the most suitable one in the world for growing coffee plants.
Brazil and Columbia are the most popular out there. Besides them, Ecuador, Venezuela, and Peru deliver a good amount of supply.
Ethiopia is the birthplace of Coffea arabica, the first known coffee plant in the world. This country supplies 3% of coffee in the global market and around 60% of their foreign income they get from exporting coffee.
Their coffee is processed either washed or natural and, these two different methods offer different flavors. With washed coffee, you will get a tea-like, floral delicacy to them. On the other hand, natural coffee offers fruity, heavy, and wine-like delicacy.
In wash coffee, sometimes you may get jasmine or lemongrass characteristics, and they appear to be much drier and lighter on the palate. Naturally processed Ethiopian coffee offers a lot of syrupy body as well as a vigorous sweet berry flavor.
In Indonesia, coffee plant cultivation began in the late 1600s and the beginning of the 1700s. Coffee production played a significant role in their economic development. And they are still delivering a large amount of coffee supply around the world.
Indonesian coffee comes with a deep and dark flavor, and you will find a special earthiness in them. Their coffee offers heavy, musty notes along with long-lasting dark cocoa or an unsweetened flavor.
You might have heard about Sumatra coffee. This coffee is very well known and widely consumed around the world. Sumatran coffee comes with well to dark roasting.
Mostly they are produced in Mandheling and Ankola and, these places are quite famous for producing top-notch coffee. You will get toasty or smokey flavors with a lot of variety in your cup of Sumatran coffee.
In Asian regions, coffee plant cultivation began many centuries ago. Asian coffee comes with a lower price tag compares to the coffee of other regions. Although, Asia offers some remarkable coffees. Most of the coffee production in Asia comes from India, China, Vietnam, and the Indonesian islands.
India has a good reputation in the world's tea market for producing quality tees. But they also produce a large amount of coffee every year. Their monsoon coffee is famous around the world.
In India, there's a great variety of climate conditions. and that makes it a perfect place for growing coffee plants. The world's famous coffee brand Starbucks purchases a large number of coffee beans from India every year. China, Vietnam, and Thailand also produce a lot of coffee nowadays.
The most popular Asian coffees are egg coffee, Dalgona, Vietnamese Iced coffee, Kopi Tobruk, South Indian Coffee, Kopi Luwak, Ipoh White Coffee, and Turkish Coffee.
Which Is the Best?
So, here's the million-dollar question - which is the best coffee among all of those we have mentioned above? It's pretty hard to say as you know different people have different tastes.
For instance, some people might like the classic balance of Columbian coffee over the fruity and winey acidity of Kenyan coffee. So, it's a subjective matter. To answer that question, which is the best coffee in the world? I'm afraid, my dear, there isn't any.
You know, your taste is affected by your genetics, upbringing, taste receptor, life experiences, the food you have consumed, mood, and stress level.
The best suggestion would be, trying different varieties of coffee. Don't stick to a specific brand and, when you venture the other sides, you will find your calling. Well, I prefer the Kenyan winey acidity-flavored coffee.
Someone once said, "coffee helps me maintain my ‘never killed anyone streak.’" So, yeah, drinking coffee is a great way to keep you sane. But when it comes to choosing a kind, I prefer to explore here and there.
There was a time, I was just stuck to one specific brand and believed every other coffee is crap. Well, the time has changed, so have I. Once, this question suddenly popped out in my mind how do coffees around the world differ in taste?
After that, I have started trying out tons of coffees around the world. And now, I have multiple choices of coffees. Believe me, getting out of that bubble and trying out different types of coffee will broaden your mind.