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Arabica coffee – overview of the world’s top coffee variety

Arabica Coffee is a kind of beans coffea arabica plants. While it was first found in Ethiopia and cultivated in Yemen, Brazil has been the world’s biggest producer of the variety, accounting for nearly 40 percent of global Arabica output. The following article gives an overview of Arabica coffee history and its presence around the world.

Origin of Arabica coffee

Arabica Coffee comes from the beans of Coffea Arabica plants. The variety originated from Ethiopia’s southwestern meadows.

Cà phê Arabica còn gọi là cà phê chè

Arabica is one of the world’s most favorite coffee varieties

Arabica name

At the early time, in Ethiopia, the Oromo tribe grinded beans and mixed with some fats to eat, like a stimulant. Once brought to the Arabians in Yemen, the beans were ground to make a hot drink, so the coffee drink was invented. The name “Arabica” means “Arabian coffee drink”. Since then, Arabica coffee has been popular all over the world. 

Historical journey of Arabica coffee

Natural Arabica coffee is now rare in Ethiopia, southeastern Sudan and northern Kenya. Most current Arabica plants are the results of crosses with bergamots.

In the 16th century, Arabica was brought to Yemen from Ethiopia. In the 17th and 18th centuries, different Arabica bergamots were discriminated against all over the world on their different journeys.

Coffee Ethiopia Arabica

It is said that Ethiopians were the first people to have tasted coffee

Nowadays, there are more than 100 Arabica coffee bergamots distributed globally and hybrided from Typica Arabica and Bourbon Arabica. Typica Arabica is brought by Dutch from Yemen to Batavia (Jakarta, Indonesia), then to Central and South America. Bourbon Arabica traveled from Yemen to Bourbon in the Indian Ocean, by French in the 19th century.

Biological property of Arabica plant

Arabica grows well on the mountains at a height of 1200 – 2200 meters. If cultivated at the height under 1000 meters, the plant develops sickly and nearly can not give fruit. The ideal temperature for this plant is between 15-24oC. And the annually accumulated rainfall of 1200-1500 millimeter per year is the optimal value for Arabica development.

Mature Arabica plants reach a height of 2.5-4.5 meters. They have vertical stems, small oval and deep green leaves. Having grown for 3-4 years, the trees can become productive providing the first harvest.

Arabica flower has 5 petals with a comfortable fragrance, being the material to make tea from coffee flowers.

Arabica fruits, or cherries, have an oval shape, turning red when they ripen. One fruit often has 2 flattened seeds at a size of 0.8-1.2 centimeters. Sometimes, a fruit has only one seed, that is called peaberry.

Cấu tạo arabica

Arabica coffee fruit is harvest when turning deep red

The caffeine content in each Arabica seed is about 1.3%. Its immune defense is weaker than that of Robusta, the other most common coffee variety. However, Arabica coffee smell and taste are considered to be extremely fascinating and comfortable.

At present, Brazil dominates the world with its Arabica production, followed by Indonesia, Colombia, Costa Rica, Mexico, Guatemala, Ecuador, Ethiopia, Burundi, Rwanda, India and Vietnam.

Arabica coffee flavor

Arabica and Robusta are the best coffee varieties. Arabica is famous for its slight fragrant smell and a little bitter and sour taste. The comfortable smell can attract anyone at the first try. This type of coffee is the favorite drink in European countries and the United States. Arabica is the ideal combination of the early sweet flavor with fruit smell and the sour flavor at the latter taste.

Hương vị cà phê chè rất được ưa chuộng

Arabica flavor is extremely fascinating because of its elegant, sweet and fragrant smell.

Arabica types


Here are examples of Arabica types around the world

Typica coffee has high quality but low productivity. Sour is the significant flavor of Typica. We can easily recognize the slight lemon sour taste mixing with the flower smell and the later slight sweet taste when trying a cup of Typica Arabica coffee.
Bourbon also has a sour taste, however, this sour taste is like the sour of wine. Sipping a Bourbon coffee, we can find that the drink is slightly sweet at the end of each sip.
Originating from Gesha town in Ethiopia and then exported to Panama, Gesha has an unique flavor, with the combination of tropical fruit smell, jasmine and honeysuckle scent. This is one of the most expensive coffee so far.
This type is considered as the mutant of Bourbon, giving high quality fruits at high productivity. It has a featured lemon sour taste. The higher it grows, the more significant sour taste becomes. However, the latter sweet taste of Caturra is not as strong as Bourbon.
Mundo Novo
Mundo Novo is the half-breed of Typica and Bourbon. It has high productivity and strong-bacteria defense. Bitter is the feature of this Arabica type and with a very low sweet taste. Nevertheless, if grown under optimal conditions, its flavor becomes much better.
Catuai is the half-breed between Mundo Novo and Caturra. It can bear harsh weather with heavy rain and strong wind. Although it has a good immune ability, its flavor is not strong and not special like the other Arabica coffee types.
This is Typica’s mutant with very low productivity. However, its flavor is cozy, comfortable, slightly sour mixing with slight sweet.
Catimor is the half-breed of Timor (Robusta) and Caturra (Arabica). Therefore, it has a good bacteria-defense ability and relatively high productivity. It has an abundant and interesting taste, slightly sour along with slight acrid at the early savor, and a little salty at the latter taste, inspiring drinkers with an unforgettable feeling.
Jamaica Blue Mountain
This type gives us a delicious experience like an ice-cream with enough sweetness. Thus, people prefer to try the original Jamaica Blue Mountain, without any other material.
Kona is one of the most expensive coffees in the world. It is famous for its slight scent, fruit mixing flower smell, and a little greasy savor in each cup of hot Kona coffee cup.
This type is half-breed of Pacas and Maragpgype, with a balanced flavors of sourness, sweetness and natural flower scent.
Pacas is the natural mutant of Bourbon. Its flavor is strange with the combination of slight sweetness and spicy, mixing with natural flower scents.
Pache is grown in Guatemala. It is famous for the smooth flavor but no significant savor. Therefore, Pache is often mixed with other materials for stronger tastes.
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