blog from the ceo & superbarista of phoenix coffee, home of the best baristas in cleveland, ohio

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

If you really want to be in the "coffee know"...

Most coffee fanatics learn that there are two species of coffee plants: Coffea Arabica and Coffea Robusta. Phoenix sells only Coffea Arabica beans, which mature more slowly than Robusta beans, have less caffeine, less chlorogenic acids and more complex flavors. They grown on plants that thrive at lower altitudes and have larger leaves than their Arabica counterparts. When I visited Finca Kassandra in Huatusco Mexico last spring, I found out that within the Arabica coffee species, there are several varieties of coffee plants. The variety that they plant at Finca Kassandra is Caturra. But here are descriptions of the other varieties, which I garnered from the marketing kit provided by the folks at Yauco Selecto Puerto Rican Coffee. So if you want people to really think that you know about coffee, you can somehow find a way to refer to some of these names.

Originally from Ethiopia, wide spread cultivation, limited yields. In maturity it can reach 10-12 feet of height. Branches grow in 60 degree angles from the trunk. Space between knots is large in comparison. Narrow leaves without much shine. Fruit is elongated with good quality and good cherry/bean %. New leaves will have a brownish appearance (tan).

Originally from the island of La Reunion. Wide spread cultivation on the higher mountain region. Tall tree. Branches grow in 45 degree angles from the trunk. Space between the knots is smaller than the typicas. New leaves will have a light green appearance. Good yield, needs early pruning and wide spacing.

Mundo Novo
Originally from Brazil, possibly a cross between borbon and typica. Tall tree. Small space between the knots. Branches grow in 45 degree angles from the trunk. New leaves will have a bronze color or sometimes green. Will mature after the typica and borbon. Adapts better to higher altitudes.

Originally from Brazil, a mutation of the borbon. Shorter and more compact tree. The branches form a 45 degree angle with the trunk. Space between the knots is very small. New leaves are light green. The leaves are more round and shiny, fruit looks like the borbon. Has high yield and matures late, good wind resistance.

Originally from El Salvador. A mutation of the borbon (like the Caturra). Early maturing of beans. Short knots, many secondary branches, heavy amount of foliage. Adapts well to sandy soils. Very resilient.

Originally from Brazil. A cross between the Mundo Novo and the Caturra. It is a short tree, but taller than the Caturra. Branches form a 45 degree angle with the trunk. Short knots. New leaves are light green. Round leaves with great shine. Late maturing. Handles wind very well.

I hope this helps all of you who are planning on planting your own coffee plantation in the near future. Or at least those of you who want to look coffee-literate at a cocktail party. Happy farming!


Blogger steveg said...

yeah, I read that too. I was wondering if we can try tasting the different subspecies ground in the same soil, region, and shade. Still I think that we can still try pressurized hydroponics to see if we can get "Clevelandus arabicus". Though it might be tough to covince the DEA that coffee is a "legal" drug.

8:44 PM, September 14, 2005  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Thank you, for speak of Huatusco
in your blog.

Escuseme for my english.
I'm learning.

Do you visit

8:37 PM, September 15, 2005  

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