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What’s Robusta Espresso?

You’ve in all probability seen all of the costly espresso in your native retailer is labeled “100% Arabica.” However what about the remainder? It’s nearly actually Robusta, the one different commercially grown espresso. 

Robusta espresso has a fame for being poor in high quality and taste. However is that deserved? Or does Arabica espresso simply have a greater PR particular person? Discover out on this fast information to Robusta espresso. Study the place it’s from, the way it’s grown, and most significantly, the way it tastes.

What does Robusta espresso imply?

Robusta espresso is espresso constructed from the seeds of the Coffea canephora plant. Coffea canephora and Coffea arabica are the one two commercially grown types of espresso. Coffea canephora grew to become generally known as Coffea robusta or Robusta as a result of it’s the extra strong of the 2 vegetation. Robusta espresso makes up about 40% of the espresso grown globally.

Rising the Robusta espresso plant

Robusta espresso originated in Africa, with roots within the Democratic Republic of Congo and Uganda. It’s nonetheless grown commercially in Africa, notably in Uganda, Tanzania, and Cote d’Ivoire. However manufacturing has expanded all around the world. The most important producer of Robusta is Vietnam, adopted by Brazil and Indonesia.

Robusta espresso thrives in a heat local weather, ideally temperatures between 70 and 86 F, and could be grown at elevations as little as sea degree.

It grows effectively in full solar, making giant plantations viable, although these actually negatively have an effect on native vegetation and wildlife. 

Due to its strong nature, Robusta is extensively thought of to be extra proof against the consequences of local weather change than Arabica espresso. Nevertheless it too will endure as our planet warms (1).

What does Robusta espresso style like?

Like all espresso sorts, Robusta espresso has quite a lot of taste profiles that rely upon rising and processing situations. Nonetheless, Robusta espresso beans are recognized for specific traits, lots of which aren’t essentially interesting.

Robusta espresso has earthy, rubbery, or grain-like flavors, typically with peanut or sesame aftertaste. It is vitally low in acid, has a heavy physique, and tends to bitterness greater than sweetness. It’s extremely caffeinated, with 250 mg of caffeine in a brewed 8-ounce cup.

Due to these inherent taste traits, professionals don’t take into account Robusta among the many finest espresso beans. Subsequently, they typically use it for low-end purposes, like low-cost pre-ground or instantaneous espresso.

There’s a idea that as a result of Robusta is grown for these purposes, it isn’t processed with the identical care as Arabica. This cycle retains Robusta from attaining its full taste potential, in accordance with the Espresso High quality Insitute (2).

Robusta is usually missed due to its historically unfavorable cupping high quality, which traces on to the way in which it’s processed.

Farmers are rising enthusiasm for high-end Robusta beans, which may fetch greater costs whereas sustaining the benefits of the tougher vegetation. So, don’t count on to see a blonde Robusta espresso at your native Starbucks anytime quickly.

This video presents an interesting look into the potential of Robusta espresso:

Robusta espresso beans do discover their method into specialty espresso outlets within the type of espresso blends. Mixing Robusta and Arabica espresso takes benefit of one of the best properties of each to supply a scrumptious espresso that’s greater than the sum of its elements. The advanced flavors and sweetness of the Arabica are enhanced by the heavy physique, creamy mouthfeel, and wealthy crema of the Robusta.

Robusta vs. Arabica

Many issues distinguish Robusta and Arabica espresso. On the farm degree, Robusta espresso is far simpler to develop. It could actually deal with a broader vary of temperatures, doesn’t require excessive elevation, and is extra proof against pests and illnesses.

Concerning processing, Arabica beans are usually picked, sorted, and washed extra fastidiously, and it is because Robusta beans are destined for cheaper purposes that don’t require the identical high quality. The processed and dried Robusta beans are smaller and rounder than Arabica beans.

Lastly, there’s a distinction within the cup. Arabica espresso is sweeter, extra acidic, and has extra advanced flavors than Robusta. 

To be taught extra about Arabica espresso, learn this text: What are Arabica espresso beans?


Many nations produce each Robusta and Arabica espresso beans, although most prioritize one over the opposite. Brazil, Indonesia, and India all produce substantial portions of each types of espresso.

Robusta has extra caffeine than Arabica. An 8-ounce brewed cup of Robusta espresso has roughly 250 mg of caffeine in contrast with about 100 mg for 8 ounces of brewed Arabica espresso.

Sure, there are different espresso bean varieties. Together with Arabica and Robusta, the opposite completely different espresso varieties are Liberica and Excelsa. Nonetheless, Liberica and Excelsa collectively make up lower than 4% of the world’s espresso manufacturing.

  1. Bean Scene Journal. (2020, June 23). Robusta espresso extra delicate to local weather change than beforehand thought. Retrieved from
  2. Hedlund, D. (2022, February 1). Can Superb Robusta Be Thought-about High quality Espresso? Retrieved from



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