Coffee is a brewed drink prepared from roasted coffee beans, which are the seeds of berries from Coffea plants that, native to subtropical Africa and some islands in southern Asia, are classified in the large family Rubiaceae.
The world’s largest coffee producers are Brazil, Vietnam, Columbia, Indonesia, Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, Peru, Ethiopia and India.
There is around a hundred species of coffee in the world.
However, those for commercial use are only tens species, that differentiate from each other for diverse reasons: plant height, leaf varieties, fragrances of flowers, coffee seed thickness and colour, flavour, quantity of caffeine and resistance to weather conditions.
The most common, grown and known plant is Coffea Arabica (better known as “arabica”) and Coffea canephora (better known as “robusta”).
Coffea Arabica, native to Africa and Arabia, is considered to be more precious and delicate than any other species of coffee trees. Its beans are small, have a green to red or brownish color, and an intense smell.
Arabica coffee is full-bodied, and has a rich aroma and a sweet taste.
Coffea robusta has its origins in central and western sub-Saharan Africa. This plant is easier to raise at lower altitutes than Arabica and is less vulnerable to pests and weather conditions.
Its beans are round-shaped and have a green to grey or brownish color. Robusta coffee generally has more caffeine than Arabica and a strong, full-bodied coffee with a distinctive, earthy flavour, but usually with more bitterness.
Coffee blends are made by mixing different coffee beans originating from diverse geographical area.
Professional coffee tasters can make good coffee blends but they have to be very careful when purchasing raw materials and choosing the types and amounts of coffee necessary to make the preferred blend and aroma.