Not all coffee blends are the same and we know this. What is perhaps not known is that the majority is composed of Arabica and Robusta, that is the two types of coffee species used to produce the blends we taste every day.
But what are the main characteristics that distinguish Arabica and Robusta?
Let’s find out together with Caffè La Messicana Piacenza, since 1957 synonymous of tradition and Italian excellence in coffee production.
The Arabica has 44 chromosomes and, despite its name, it is not cultivated in Arabia but it grows mainly in the mountainous regions of South and Central America, as well as in the “reefs” of Kenya and Ethiopia. The Arabica plant is sensitive to warm and humidity, it grows best at high altitudes, above a thousand meters.
The Arabica bean is flat and elongated with a sinuous S-shaped furrow.
It is characterized by a delicate taste, with a more or less marked sourness and with an intense aromatic sensations.
The Arabica contains 18% oils and a quantity of caffeine from 0.9% to 1.7%.
The Robusta has 22 chromosomes and is produced in West Africa (Cameroon, Ivory Coast) and in the Far East (India, Vietnam and Indonesia).
The Robusta beans have a rounded shape and a sort of straight groove.
The Robusta is characterized by a strong taste and a great sense of body on the palate.
It has 9% oils and can contain up to 2.8% caffeine.
Arabica VS Robusta
When preparing the espresso with the two types of coffee beans, the difference is noted by grinding.
Robusta requires finer grinding as the beans are harder. The espresso prepared with Robusta has a good body, with an intense taste at first sight.
The espresso with the Arabica has persistence and shows a positive sourness, wide aromaticity and sweetness. The rest is simply a question of subjective inclinations: with its aroma, coffee must touch the strings of our senses.
It is fundamental that it is a coffee of excellent quality and certified origin, prepared to perfection.