Tag Archives: Ask Carl

Ask Carl: Arabica vs. Robusta Coffee Beans

Ask CarlCommunity Coffee Company prides itself on using only the top 10 percent of Arabica coffee beans in the world. While to coffee aficionados this statement is a no-brainer, many people have asked us, “What does that really mean?” We’re bringing in Carl Leonard, our resident coffee expert, to explain why Community Coffee selects only the finest beans for its signature blends.

Q: What are Arabica beans, and how do they differ from other types of coffee beans?

A: Arabica beans comprise 75 to 80 percent of the world’s coffee production, and are used in most premium and specialty coffees (and all of Community Coffee’s blends). Arabica beans are known for their fine aromas and delightfully rich flavors. Robusta is another coffee bean variety that is grown at lower altitudes. It tends to be less expensive than Arabica and its flavor is considered to be far less desirable by those who truly appreciate excellent premium and specialty coffee aroma and flavor.

Q: Do Arabica beans and Robusta beans taste different? Is one better than the other?

A: Unroasted Arabica beans have a pleasant, floral aroma and when roasted produce a smooth and rich cup of coffee. Unroasted Robusta beans, on the other hand, have a grainy aroma and when roasted produce a harsh burnt smell and flavor (reminiscent of burning rubber). Robusta beans are generally much cheaper and easier to cultivate than Arabica, but Community Coffee selects only the finest Arabica beans for its coffee blends.

Now that you truly understand the top quality beans that go into Community coffee, go enjoy a cup and see for yourself!

About Carl

Carl Leonard is the vice president of green coffee procurement at Community Coffee Company and joined the company in 1983. He is a Licensed Q Grader, a professional cupper accredited by the Coffee Quality Institute and is a certified cupping judge of the Specialty Coffee Association of America – that means he knows his coffee!


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