Coffee is probably the most popular drink all over the world besides tea. Coffee plant is originally native to tropical Africa. But now it is planted and cultivated in more than 70 countries, though dominantly still in equatorial regions such as America, Southeast Asia, Indian subcontinent, and Africa. In fact, it was in 15th century, in nowadays Yemen (southern Arab), that coffee seeds were first roasted and brewed in a way similar to how it is now prepared for drinking. Maybe that’s why one of coffee variant is called Arabica. Coffee Arabica are dominantly exist, about 60% of world production. The other variant, Coffee Robusta are the remaining 40%. In general, Arabica grow well in highland, while Robusta grow well in lowland. From data of United Nations per 2016, the biggest producer of coffee beans consecutively are Brazil, Vietnam, Colombia, Indonesia, and Ethiopia.
For 3 years, I was assigned some jobs to do at Merangin Regency, Jambi Province of Indonesia. There are many coffee fields in Merangin, also cinnamon and patchouli oil (a kind of atsiri compounds useful in perfume making). But on this post I’ll discuss about the first only, I’ll talk about the others on separate posts.
In this place, wherever I go, there are coffee fields of someone. Looks like this plant has already become main income for local people. They export their coffee to another city, even to industries. I found it everywhere, either it’s along the road, near the river, on mountain feet, even on mountain slope.
On several occasions, when I weren’t too busy, I took photos of them.
Fruit of coffee plants are green when they are young. As they’re ripen, the colors changing to yellow, then crimson red, finally purple-ish black when dying.
Flower of coffee plants are small, white, and have a sweet fragrance, just like jasmine. I smell it myself and get surprised.
Though, too many flowers can reduce the quality of coffee cherries, hence the flowers have to be pruned frequently, in order to the fruit grows more tastefully.
The ripen fruit, called coffee cherry — obviously because the color is red, are picked, processed, and dried. The dried coffee cherries are then smashed, they have 2 seeds inside. They’re called coffee beans.
Coffee beans are then roasted in various temperature, depending of what taste & flavor people want to achieve. Roasted beans are ground, then brewed with nearly boiling water to produce a cup of coffee.
Well, enjoy your coffee!