Sumatra Coffee

If you are a coffee lover, it is possible that you must have heard of the Sumatran coffee. It has a very complex flavor profile that makes it one of the most unique coffee beans in the world. Either you love it or hate it, the Sumatran coffee is one type of coffee bean that you need to try at least once.

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Sumatra is Specialty Coffee

Sumatra Coffee

Sumatran coffee is a unique and special type of coffee beans that has a very earthy and chocolaty flavor, which is mostly attributed to the way it is being produced. The coffee bean is normally grown in small farms with hundreds of coffee trees. These farms work with structured coffee cooperatives that allow the coffee farmers to work hand-in-hand with them and the profit is split. Each of these cooperatives follows a set of strict regulations and guidelines that will help the farmer and improve the coffee crop each year.

Why Sumatra Coffee?

Some of the world’s most premium gourmet coffees are grown in Sumatra. These coffees are distinguished by their low acidity, full-bodied and distinct herbal tones, and more earthy flavors than java Arabica. The low acidity in the Sumatran coffee is one of the most attractive points for people who have a sensitivity to organic acids in coffee.

Sumatran coffee is renowned and well-reviewed all over the world for providing a satisfying and rich flavor.

Sumatran green coffee beans

Sumatran coffee is known to be one of the most forgiving for home roasting. While you can typically go for a great medium roast, you can also opt for the dark roast because of the spicy and robust flavor in the beans. This fact, when combined with a low price tag, makes it a great option for blends.

How is the Sumatran coffee blended?

Most of the flavors you taste in the Sumatran coffee comes from the way it is processed. The processing method is a natural processing or dry processing technique called wet hulling. The coffee cherries are first removed from the tree while they are still wet. The weather conditions in Sumatra does not allow for the same drying process that usually happens in other coffee-growing countries.

The farmers have a maximum of about four hours of drying time before the rain starts. This is the reason why the coffee beans are dried only until it reaches 50% moisture content. The coffee cherries are then transported to a wet hulling machine. This mechanism makes use of friction to further dry the coffee. The process also removes the protective coating from the coffee beans. In the end, you end up with fermented coffee beans that will have a distinctive and earthy flavor.

Traditional, not treated with chemicals

The Sumatran coffee beans are unique only to Indonesia. The coffee farmers produce coffee from the start to finish in the traditional method.

But this does not mean that they have been making use of this method for centuries. The process has been innovated over a span of time whenever a more advanced innovation came into play. While these innovations are usually the baby steps, the main aspect of the overall production method remains traditional and ingenious to Indonesia.

The whole process is done without the aid of any chemicals. Some people consider certain chemicals that could help with the production with the coffee, but otherwise, the whole process remains completely natural and organic.

Women employment in coffee farms

Women constitute about 80% of the coffee farmers in Sumatra. They are the backbone of the production process here. On the contrary that many people consider they do not have the required training in the harvesting techniques, the women working on these coffee farms have decades worth of experience.

Women have been working in fields for generations. Although they might lack the technical know-how, they have the practical knowledge to make up for it. And judging by the fact that Sumatra is known for the best coffee beans, they are doing a great job at it.

What does Sumatran coffee taste like?

Sumatran coffee beans taste very much than other types of coffee beans. They have excess moisture that gives off a lot of different aromas and flavors. Sumatran coffee has a much lower acidity but with a lot more earthy flavors. You will find tasting notes of balsamic vinegar, herbaceous, moss, wild mushrooms, bell pepper, and spicy herbs.

Some people might find the above tasting notes to be odd since they normally indicate that the coffee has gone bad. But in the case of the Sumatran coffee, the complexity of these flavors indicate quality. The fermentation process during storage gives the coffee a very unique taste.

Different types of Sumatran coffee

Sumatran Mandheling coffee

This coffee is considered to be one of the best tasting coffee from Sumatra. It has a very complex, rich and smooth taste. At first, you will notice the taste notes of chocolate and licorice. The climate and the soil of Sumatra help it develop a very unique taste. It is grown in the region of Padang. For the best earthy taste, it is recommended that you give it a medium-dark or dark roast.

Kopi Luwak Sumatran Coffee

This coffee might easily be one of the most expensive coffee in the world. It is also produced in a way that is unique only to Sumatra. For the process to begin, palm civet cats are given green coffee beans to consume. When they excrete the beans, they are cleaned and processed before distribution. The finished product has a very distinct taste that is similar to mushrooms and tomatoes. This is because the acid inside the cat’s stomach and the wet hulling process makes it taste so.

Sdikalang Sumatra Coffee

This is another type of coffee that hails from the Sdikalang region. It is a mountainous area that helps produce uniquely-tasting coffee. The plantations are located at more than 1,500 meters from sea level and positively affects the coffee beans. Sdikalang is one of the most popular Sumatran places to visit, thanks to its great tasting coffee.

Sumatra was the 4th largest country in the world that produces coffee. The reason is that the coffee from the region is much sought after, especially by people who are very sensitive to acidic coffee. You should try this coffee at least once in a lifetime.

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