What Are Arabica Beans?
Originating in Ethiopia, arabica beans are one of the most popular type of coffee around the world and make up at least 60% of all coffee production. Arabica beans come from the Coffea Arabica plant, and can be found inside the ripe dark red or reddish-purple berry fruit.
HOW AND WHERE IT IS GROWN
The Arabica bean is dominantly grown in Latin America, with Brazil being the largest producer. The Coffea Arabica plant is harder to grow compared to the Robusta bean because it is a lot more sensitive and more vulnerable to pests and changes in weather conditions.
It grows best in tropical climates around the equator because it prefers humidity and shade rather than frosts. It is also grown at higher elevations of 1,900+ feet and on hillsides. In addition, the Arabica bean plant takes 7 years to fully mature and ready for the fruits to be picked by hand. Due to these reasons, the Arabica beans tend to be more expensive and considered as superior to the Robusta beans.
HOW IT TASTES
Coffee produced from the Arabica bean tends to have a sweeter and softer taste. It is higher in acidity with little bitterness. Depending on the variety and where it was grown, the bean can take on a few different flavors. It tends to have a chocolate, caramel, or nutty flavor and can also have sugar, fruit, and berry tones. Compared to the Robusta bean or other mixed Arabica and Robusta blends, 100% Arabica beans will tend to have a brighter and lighter flavors.
HOW MUCH CAFFEINE IS IN ARABICA BEANS
When you compare Robusta to Arabica, Arabica beans contain less caffeine (almost half the amount). The smaller amount of caffeine in Arabica beans also contribute to the lack of bitterness that you can find in the Robusta-based coffees. Read more about the difference between Arabica and Robusta beans here.