Arabica Vs. Robusta – Which is Specialty Coffee?

We know not everyone is an expert in the origins of their coffee. As a specialty coffee shop in Minneapolis, our job and passion are to source high-quality coffee beans from ethically run farms across the globe. We put in the work to do this, so all you have to worry about is sitting down and enjoying your favorite coffee beverage.

For some, however, it can be fun to learn new things about their beloved morning (or afternoon and evening) beverage. This is why we loved to answer questions like where do coffee beans come from? What is Espresso? And What’s the difference between fair and direct trade?

Today’s coffee question is diving into two little words we are sure you have seen before. Arabica and Robusta. What do they mean? How do they apply to specialty coffee?

Arabica Coffee

Arabica coffee comes from a specific coffee plant called Coffea arabica. The beans this plant grows account for over 60% of the beans cultivated across the world. The arabica coffee plant originated in Ethiopia. It grows up to 15 feet tall. Arabica coffee has a smooth, sweet taste with notes of chocolate and sugar.

There are a variety of arabica coffee variations including Typica, Bourbon, Mundo Novo, Kona, and more!

Robusta Coffee

Robusta coffee comes from beans growing on the Coffea canephora plant. Robusta coffee is known to have a bitter taste. It is generally used in instant coffee or as a filler in coffee blends.

Robusta coffee plants are hardy, resistant to disease, and produce high yields. It also contains more caffeine.

What’s The Difference?

When it comes to taste, robusta beans have a more bitter and harsh taste. Their unroasted beans have been described as smelling more like peanuts. Arabica coffee, on the other hand, has a smooth sweet taste with hints of chocolate. Even the unroasted beans smell pleasant like blueberries.

Robusta beans grow at lower altitudes, are more resistant to pests, and easily grow a high yield. Arabica beans are a bit more fragile. They require cool, moist, subtropical climates with rich soil and the perfect combination of shade and sun.

Because of the difference in growing conditions and yields, Robusta beans tend to be cheaper but we think the quality of Arabica beans is worth the higher price.

Specialty Arabica Coffee

When faced with the choice, Arabica will always produce a better quality cup of coffee. As a specialty coffee shop in Minneapolis, we are passionate about the quality of beans we make our coffee. It’s no contest and only Arabica beans can be classified as specialty coffee.

To taste the difference between a good quality cup of coffee stop into a 7 corners coffee shop today.

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