Coffee is without question one of the most popular drinks on the planet. It’s grown in over 70 countries across the planet and it figures large as people’s favourite pick-me-up. Everyone has their own favourites but we’ve shortlisted our top 9 coffee regions in the world.
Whilst the top producing countries grow a staggering quantity of coffee they don’t necessarily produce the best coffees or the most prized.
There are some nations that really hide their light under a bushel, whilst quietly producing some of the world’s best beans, so we thought we’d highlight a few of our favourite coffee destinations.
These are our personal picks for what we think are the 9 best coffee regions in the world.
Our Top 9 Coffee Regions in the World
Realistically is there a more exotic-sounding brew than a cup of coffee Jamaican Blue Mountain?
Renowned for its mild, smooth and mellow flavours Jamaican coffee is one of the most sought after coffees in the world. Coffee was first introduced into Jamaica in 1728 and like Champagne this coffee is restricted by its geography and is only grown and harvest in the mountains of the same name.
The Blue Mountains are amongst the highest in the Caribbean. The climate is cool and humid with high rainfall and good drainage. This makes for the perfect coffee growing conditions contributing to the success of this coffee.
Brazil has been producing around a quarter of the world’s coffee for over 150 years, but that’s not surprising as the climate is perfect for growing Arabica and Robusta beans.
The country boasts just the right levels of sunlight and rainfall, low elevation and even temperatures all year round. Brazilian coffee is known for its creamy body, low acidity and subtle bittersweet rich chocolate and caramel notes, making it the perfect base for making great flavoured coffees.
Did you know Brazil is actually the leading producer of coffee in the world? Brazil produces a whopping 2.59 million tons a year!
Colombia, with its perfect terrain and climate, is one of the few countries that produce 100% Arabica beans.
The beans are typically grown at 1500-2000 metres, which produces a range of medium bodied coffees with rich nutty aromas and a hint of citrus acidity, delivering a mild flavour and subtle sweetness.
Sales of coffee in Colombia are regulated by Café de Colombia, a non-profit organisation, who represent the coffee trade in Colombia. Its work touches every family in the country with profits re-invested to the benefit of coffee growing communities.
#6 Costa Rica
Costa Rica is a small country, but one blessed with an enviable geography, which means that typically coffee beans are grown at high altitudes between 1200-1800metres in rich volcanic soil.
Coffee plays a vital role in their economy being the #3 export from Costa Rica whilst making up a small proportion of overall coffee sales around the world. The beans grown from their volcanic soil deliver honey notes with hints of roasted nut, with fruity and acidic notes of citrus and apricot with a clean and crisp finish.
Coffee holds a special place in Ethiopian culture, perhaps this is because it’s the birthplace of coffee, whatever the reason unlike most other countries it is treated with the utmost respect and with great reverence by almost everyone in the country.
Ethiopia offers up thousands of varieties of coffee bean each with its own distinctive characteristics, with a wide range of flavours, which vary hugely from varieties with a wine like notes to those with overtly fruity aromas, and unlike most countries the best coffees are purely for local consumption and will never leave the country…
Honduran coffees until relatively recently have been largely overlooked, they were perceived to be of poor quality but that as it turns out was completely unfounded. Most Honduran coffees are typically grown on small mountain side farms known as ‘Fincas’ at high altitudes of between 1400-1700 metres.
Many of these ‘Fincas’ have their own micro-climate, which in turn leads to a huge range of flavour profiles and aromas from hazelnut notes, right through to caramel and vanilla with hints of red fruit.
Indonesia is made up of thousands of islands, which is why the coffee available from this part of the globe is so diverse. It has to be said, Indonesian coffees are high up on pretty much everyone’s coffee top 10 with Javan, Sumatran and Sulawesi high on the list. These are coffees that really deliver often with earthy undertones providing complex smoky and spicy flavours and a full body with a rich aroma.
Here’s a place you never thought you’d see on a top 10 coffee list.
Coffee has been about in the Hawaiian Islands for quite a while, in fact since the 1800’s, with original plants brought to Oahu from Brazil by botanist James Macrae part of the crew of H.M.S Blonde in 1825.
The island’s combination of warm, sunny weather, rich volcanic soil, and the perfect balance of wind, sun and rain helps growers produce some really interesting beans including highly acclaimed Kona coffee. Hawaiian coffee is buttery with lots of flavour variation ranging from chocolate right through to hints of allspice.
But our pick for the top coffee region in the world is…
Our top coffee region in the world is Kenya.
Kenya produces some sublime coffees on the high plateau at above 1400 metres, which is why a cup of Kenya is known as the Connoisseurs Cup.
It’s no surprise really though when you start delving you will rapidly find that Kenyan beans are pretty distinctive and complex, bursting with fruit notes.
A good Kenyan coffee is full-bodied, crisp, vibrant and pretty full on with hints of pepper and rich blackberry.
If you feel inspired to try a little sample of Kenya here’s our pick from this outstanding coffee region.
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