Best Java Coffees in 2022

Java beans from Indonesia are known for their smooth, fine, clean and full body flavor. It contains some of the most sought after beans in the world for their uniqueness and good quality.

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Java Coffee

Java is popular for growing high grade Arabica a variety of coffee that does well in mountainous regions while else the whole of Indonesia grows the low quality Robusta beans. Indonesia is the fourth ranked as coffee exporter as well as producer in the world of coffee.

Introduction of coffee in Java

Coffee was planted initially in the areas of Batavia, Bogor and Sukabumi in Indonesia and was introduced by the colonial government of Dutch. Later coffee was introduced in the east, west and central of java together with Sulawesi and Sumatra. Forested areas were cut down to be replaced with coffee plantations. Coffee production led to development of good infrastructure in the central region of java in the 19th century. This included rails and roads which was very helpful in making the area accessible for coffee plantation to shipping areas.

Coffee production in java and other Indonesian regions

There exist three major coffee producing regions in Indonesia namely; java, Sumatra and Sulawesi. Java is among the largest archipelago islands and also the top most coffee producer. The popular coffee variety of is the Arabica gourmet coffee beans. The altitudes peak over 1500 meters. The temperature varies from about 16 -20 degrees Celsius.

Since Arabica is highly prone to crop diseases such as roya, close inspection of the plant is needed as it grows. Java is well revere for producing one of the best quality olds coffees in the old java. The coffee beans from java are capable of being stored in warehouses for about 2-3 years without going bad.

The other coffee growing region in Indonesia is Sulawesi. Coffee from this region is popular for being produced naturally using the drying method. One of the major coffee growing regions here is Toraja. In this region coffee grows at 1500m above the mean sea level. Traditional farming methods are used and most of the coffee growers are small scale farmers. The process of harvesting and sorting out the coffee beans is done using hand picking and thus ensuring only the good quality beans are picked. This method of cherry picking is suitable for the steep terrain where coffee is grown coupled with haphazard coffee crop planting leading to about 300 kg coffee per each hectare.

Toraja coffee is unique for its full body taste coupled with caramel like aroma and a clean and crisp after taste. The regions vegetation partially contributes to the wonderful aroma of this bean. Very low yearly yields of this coffee make it one of the coffee varieties looked for in the world. The conditions such and steep elevated regions and out dated farming methods contribute to its short supply.

The other coffee growing region is Sumatra. Mandheling and ankola (name used for Arabica seldom market) are one of the major worlds popular varieties of best quality coffee beans. Mandheling is produced in the region exterior of the city called Padang. The coffee has a heavy, syrupy like body with composite flavor and low acidity. The coffee is dry processed through natural processing to give it rich and unique flavor.

Coffee plants in Java and other coffee growing regions in Indonesia

Robusta is a low grade coffee bean with more caffeine and low quality flavor. The crops flower twice a year giving room to two harvesting periods. The plants have more yields than the Arabica coffee. In Sumatra the period of flowering is usually November- January while in Java the period runs from end of July to September. The Robusta are cross pollinating while the Arabica are self -pollinating. The fruits remain the same way for six to eight weeks after pollinating. Fifteen weeks is the period within which the fruits develop to full grown cherries.

Processing of coffee

The picking begins when the frits start turning red. Larger farms use drip picking mechanism while small scale farmers will use manual hand picking. The handpicking method is the best since only the ripe, defect and debris free berry is picked. The beans have to stay for two days before being further processed. The next processing level produces the green coffee. Two processing methods are usually used; the wash method and the natural processing.

Drying method

Drying method is the common technique used in java to process coffee beans. It involve under the sun coffee beans drying laid on sack, concrete on the road side. The beans must be less than 5 centimeters high and should be regularly turned to ensure enough humidity is achieved. Having the beans rained on is not an option and should be avoided.

The drying takes some weeks and one the outer cover starts peeling off the pulp is removed. Mulching of the by machinery though most of them are manual- hand driven. The result of this process is green coffee bean which is thrice small than the picked cherry. This method coffee bean is smooth, sweet, complex and heavy bodied flavor.

Wash processing

Using this method the bean is processed immediately after being picked. Water system is used to process the beans. The result of this process ids more cleaner, fruitier and bright beans. The bean is kept in water for about 24 to 48 hours to allow the bean to ferment. This is where the coffee bean gains the fine and acidity great flavor. During fermentation, the pulp softens for easier removing.

Grinding and brewing coffee Java Coffee

Having your beans freshly grid just before brewing coffee helps get the best aroma and flavor. Hot water is preferred to boiling water as boiling water vaporizes the aroma and flavor hints at it extracts the unwanted bitter taste from the coffee.

Brewing methods

Coffee press- hot water is poured over roughly ground coffee and allows it to set for about four minutes. A filter, mesh like is pushed at the bottom of a port to separate the coffee grounds from the brew coffee. This is a better method than the cold brew as it well outlines the original flavor of the beans.

Other methods include drip, espresso and pour over methods. The coffee can either be a dark, light or medium roast.

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Last Updated: 07/22/2020