5 Regions That Produces The Best Indonesian Coffee Beans
Calling all coffee lovers who know your favorite coffee!
If you are a coffee lover, you probably have a list of your favorite beans. Be it arabica, robusta, etc, you must have grown accustomed to the taste that matches your buds. Indonesian coffees though were not that simple.
Each region of the country produces different Indonesian coffees. They have their own specialties, as well as a distinct taste that has become a part of their identity. Some coffee-growing regions in Indonesia have also become popular regions. As a result, with every different region comes with their special beans with different rich taste.
Coffee plants are typically planted in densities ranging from 1,100 to 2,000 trees per hectare. Coffee trees are frequently shaded, resulting in "shade grown" coffee, which develops more slowly due to the lack of sunshine, enabling the roots to supply more nutrients to the green coffee beans within the coffee cherries before they are completely mature for harvesting.
Below are 5 regions of Indonesia that produce the best coffee in Indonesia.
5 Regions of Indonesia Coffee Beans
The first popular region for Indonesian coffee plantations is in Sumatra. Sumatra Mandailing Coffee is recognized for its smooth and thick body, which is frequently characterized as syrupy. It is farmed in the west-central area near Padang. The greatest Sumatran coffees have a low acidity level, yet just enough to lend complexity to the varied flavors. Mandailing or often called Sumatra Mandheling Coffee is known for its rich sweet chocolate tones, as well as licorice and other spice-based tastes. Spices refer to herbs such as cinnamon, nutmeg, and cardamom, rather than Scoville units of heat.
Sumatran green coffee beans are noted for being forgiving when it comes to home roasting, taking an excellent medium roast but also going well into dark roasts because of their powerful, spicy taste that continues into heavier roasts.
The technique of Sumatra coffee, known as wet hulling, is the most important aspect when it comes to its low acidity.
Lintong coffee has a sweet flavor profile, a medium body, moderate acidity, an earthy, complex scent, and a distinct cedar and spice flavor that is not found in any other coffee. Sumatra Lintong is farmed near Lake Toba in North Sumatra, which has the elevations required for Arabica coffee growing. Clean acidity and brighter acidity, as well as a lighter texture, differentiate high-quality Lintongs from their regional siblings (still considered a medium body).
Aceh is one of the few places in the world that sells aged coffee, which has been held for months or years to enable the flavor to alter and develop rather than being placed on the market right away. This extra attention comes at a cost (some spoilage, storage, and administrative time) and is frequently reflected in a somewhat higher price. While the flavor isn't necessarily greater or worse than a standard Sumatra, fans prize it for its intricacy and uniqueness.
Gayo coffee is a well-known coffee in Indonesia. The Gayo area includes the highlands between 1,300 and 1,600 meters above sea level that surround Gayo Mountain and Lake Tawar. These coffees are generally processed using the "Gilling Basah" method. Aceh Gayo beans have a spicy aroma and dark choco flavor with sugar cane, full body with acid light.
Also read: Kopi Aceh Gayo: History, Characteristics, and Variety
Sulawesi's coffee has a velvety body, moderate acidity, and a smooth finish. With robust cinnamon, cardamom, and black pepper, its tastes tend to be on the warmer side of spice.
Toraja coffee (also known as Celebes coffee) is one of the most famous Indonesian coffees in the Sulawesi region, followed by Kalossi, a multi-dimensional coffee cultivated in the southeastern highlands and known for its broad taste and full-bodied richness.
An excellent Toraja is well-balanced, with ripe fruit and dark chocolate overtones. The region's high elevations (1,400-1,900 meters+) qualify several of these coffees for Strictly High Grown certification.
Toraja coffee bean has been described as deep and gloomy, with subdued fruit flavors, rustic sweetness, and frequently a pungent spicy quality, similar to Sumatran coffees.
To bring out the greatest tastes, it is recommended to use a Dark Roast. Sulawesi is often a highly rated coffee that isn't included in many mixes; nonetheless, home roasters may want to consider including it in blends for its distinctive flavor.
Flores is a tiny island in comparison to other Indonesian islands, measuring about 200 miles from end to end. The island is famed for its lush vegetation and is one of the few sites where the endangered Komodo Dragon may be seen. Its coffee, on the other hand, remains a staple. The majority of the coffee plantation is cultivated between 1,200 and 1,800 meters above sea level in Bajawa. Flores features a rough landscape with a number of active and dormant volcanoes. Volcanic ash has formed fertile andosols, which are ideal for organic coffee growing.
The wet-hulling method is used by Flores farmers. The coffee has a sweet, milk chocolate flavor with flowery, woody overtones and a syrupy mouthfeel because of this process and Flores' location.
Java coffee is a wet-processed (washed) coffee cultivated predominantly on the east side of the island of Java in Indonesia, at heights approximately 1,400 meters, in the Ijen volcanic complex on the Ijen Plateau.
The ideal growing altitude for coffee plantations in this area is 750-1,550 meters above sea level is the ideal growing altitude for Arabica coffee plants. May/June-August/September is the harvest season. with the process of milling are washed and sun-dried. It has a nutty aroma and a malty, chocolatey, bright, sweet flavor.
Coffee production is on the five largest estates built by the Dutch colonial government in the 18th century, when Java was part of the Dutch East Indies produce the best Java coffee.
Djampit, (the largest producer), Blawan, Pancoer, and Kayumas are the largest coffee estates in Java, with about 4,000 hectares of coffee plantations. Since the 17th century, coffee has been grown in this area and has been loved by people from all over the world.
The coffee fruit (coffee cherries) is fermented and washed using the wet process to remove the pulp after harvest.
Bali coffees are a relatively new addition to the premium gourmet coffee market, having been grown in the country's central highlands. In several evaluations, Bali coffee is described as having a rich scent, a smokey (wood) flavor, and a robust body. Despite being largely High Grown, they are highly developed because of mineral-rich volcanic soil and procedures such as natural manure and shade-growing, which allow the coffee beans to mature slowly.
The coffee supply in Bali is limited, and most of the coffee is wet-processed (washed), however, there are several outstanding dry processed (unwashed; natural) Bali coffees. They grow on volcanic soils, which provide a rich supply of nutrients and allow the trees to develop rich aromas that are described as woody and earthy in tasting notes. While not always certified organic, coffee trees are common "organically cultivated" with manure from nearby farms, and shade-growing is common.
Roasterie Tri Hita Karana's dry processed (unwashed; natural) light-roasted coffee is stated to have rich reflections of fermentation that form throughout the drying process, as well as a cherry-brandy character.
Dark chocolate overtones and a pungent herb character may also be found in dry-processed Kintamani Coffee, which is given a medium roast.
Types of Indonesian Coffee Beans
There are A LOT of Indonesian Coffee beans types. But so far, there are 3 of the most favorite one. Which are Arabica coffee beans, Luwak coffee beans, and Robusta beans.
1. Arabica Coffee Beans
Arabica coffee beans are the first to be included in many varieties of Indonesian coffee beans. As you may already know, Arabica coffee is one of the specialty coffees of Indonesia. Even if there are 80% Robusta 20% Arabica farms in Indonesia, Arabica is still a favorite among them.
2. Luwak Coffee Beans
The infamous Indonesian Coffee, Luwak Coffee or Kopi Luwak. Some people want to throw money away for this one-of-a-kind coffee. This coffee is inseparable from its main producer, the Luwak animal. For those of you who don't know, this coffee comes from the fermentation process in the stomach (kudos to all Luwak Coffee farmers!).
This coffee has been popular since the 90s. It was and is still one of the most expensive coffee beans you can get. For a 450 gram package, you will have to pay around $100. Of course, you can also pay more for a better quality.
3. Robusta Beans
There is one popular type of Indonesian coffee bean called Robusta coffee. Robusta is actually number two after Arabica, but that doesn't mean it tastes less than Arabica. The difference with these beans is that Robusta beans taste more bitter than Arabica.
However, its bitter taste provides a strong taste for all coffee lovers in Indonesia and around the world. So far, 80% of Robusta coffee and 20% of Arabica are grown in all coffee fields in Indonesia. This may be because robusta is easy to handle and Indonesian soil is also very suitable for robusta.
The nature of Indonesian soil and environment provides a distinct regions to produce coffee. Growing from Sumatra, Sulawesi, Flores, Java and Bali, each growing region produces a different taste of coffee beans. Furthermore, not only popular with the regions, Indonesia is also known for its various kinds of coffee beans. The most popular one, Arabica beans, is considered a specialty coffee. The most expensive coffee beans, Luwak Coffee or Kopi Luwak is also produced in Indonesia. But, the most grown coffee bean is Robusta, which because it's easy to plant and handle in Indonesian soil.
Also read: The History and Most Well-Known Coffee Beans Around the World