There are certain varieties or origins in the world of coffee that enjoy a special reputation for their quality and uniqueness. They usually come from particular regions or climates that allow them to acquire unique conditions (and, consequently, their fruit). This is the case of Java coffee, a product that is difficult to find but which undoubtedly deserves a place on our pages.
We have said “variety,” but the truth is that gourmet Java coffee is more a type that brings together several varieties, as we will see below.
It isn’t easy to buy Java coffee in many countries unless you specifically ask for it in a gourmet or speciality coffee shop. Even the online option, which usually works well with other products, is not an optimal resource in this case either. The stock of Java coffee on Amazon is not usually abundant, with few brands and formats to choose from.
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Where does Java coffee come from?
Java coffee naturally comes from the island of Java in Indonesia. It is not to be confused with civet coffee or Kopi Luwak, which is also produced in the same country but which is a different variety. It can be said that Java coffee is the raw material for Kopi Luwak… but nothing more.
The particular climate of the island of Java, purely tropical, humid, hot, constant all year round, with volcanic soil and a profusion of jungles, is largely to blame for the unique qualities of Java coffee.
The origin of Java coffee is very curious, as the original plantations were mainly Arabica beans. Over time, they began to be replaced by Iberica and especially Robusta varieties because they are much more resistant to pests and diseases. Especially during the late 19th century, when a major rust plague destroyed most of the crops, farmers decided to replant them all with robusta. And it is these robusta varieties that remain today on about 90% of the island’s plantations.
What is the Java coffee bean-like?
It is a bean with very particular, almost unique properties and characteristics. Java coffee is, in reality, a mixture of varieties that have in common their origin: the aforementioned Indonesian island.
However, as we explained before, although most of them are robusta beans, there are also some varieties of Iberic and arabica. These beans are much less common in this region but more appreciated by the consumer. In commercial production, it is also common to find blends or mixtures of more than one Java variety (for example, 50% Arabica and 50% Robusta, or the most common mixtures of Robusta and Liberica).
The Java coffee bean grows at a certain altitude (approximately 1200 meters above sea level) and is usually a fairly large bean. The coffee trees grow very fast and reach high altitudes.
On the palate, Java coffee is strong, intense, with an exciting mix of spicy and sweet nuances at the same time. There are evident hints of chocolate and nuts. It is full-bodied, low in acidity and the overall sensation is very balanced, round, seamless.
The aroma of the Java coffee bean distils floral, soft and sweet notes very clearly.
Price of Java coffee
The price of Java coffee is high, as is natural due to its prestige and the exclusivity of its production. But, in any case, it will always depend on the variety we choose. A pure 100% Arabica bean will not cost the same as a Robusta bean or a blend, although all can be considered Java coffee.
As a reference, let’s consider that a kilogram of Java coffee beans can be found in the range of 15-20 pounds (minimum).