INDONESIAN COFFEE

 

Indonesia's coffee plantations cover a total area of approximately 1.24 million hectares, 933 hectares of robusta plantations and 307 hectares of arabica plantations. More than 90 percent of total plantations are cultivated by small-scale growers who own relatively small plantations of about 1-2 hectares, each.

Coffee types from Indonesia are diverse and complex, syrupy, low acidity and typically extremely dense which makes them ideal for roasting on the darker side. This is largely due to the widespread practice of a traditional processing method unique to Indonesia known as "giling basah". This semi-washed method is known commonly as wet-hulling and nearly all the coffee in the region are processed in this manner. In short, the coffee cherry is allowed to dry on the bean for a short time before being washed and removed, imparting some of the flavours of the pulp and fruit to the bean.

Gayo Coffee (Sumatera Island)

Harvest Season: November - March

Typical Arrival: April

The Gayo coffee has got the same name with the mountain area where this coffee first planted. These Indonesian coffee beans, that are grown on the highland of the Central Aceh region, has a distinctive flavour and a fine taste. It’s not too bitter and not too strong, due to its perfect taste, the Gayo coffee gets Fair Trade Certified from International Organization of Fair Trade in 2010. Not just that, the Gayo coffee is also nominated as the best coffee in the world at International Conference on Coffee Science. Additionally, the Gayo coffee became the most expensive coffee at a coffee exhibition that held by Specialty Coffee Association of America. For the time being, US and Europe nations are the main export destination of this coffee. Gayo coffee mostly tastes like chocolate and earthy depending on how the coffee beans are roasted, but its natural taste would mostly show all of the time. 

Kintamani Coffee (Bali Island)

Harvest Season: May - October

Typical Arrival: August - September

This coffee has big size beans and a very strong body. The taste isn’t too bitter. The Kintamani coffee has two main notes, flower and lemon. The lemon and flower notes contribute to the uniqueness flavour of this coffee. The Indonesian coffee beans, that are planted in the mountain range of Kintamani in Bali Island, has an enormous production, approximately 2000-3000 tons annually. In the plantation, the Kintamani coffee beans are irrigated with the traditional technique of irrigation called Subak. The main export destination of this coffee is Japan, Australian and Arab. Most of the coffee in Bali is grown in the Kintamani Highlands between the Batukaru and Agung volcanoes. These active volcanoes keep the soil fresh with extremely fertile volcanic ash which we know is a boon for coffee plants. The local farmers are members of a traditional farming structure known as "Sabuk Abian." Similar to a coop, this organization is based on the Hindu philosophy of "Tri Hita Karana" which teaches that the three sources of happiness are harmony with God, harmony with other people and harmony with the environment. This has led to Bali being at the forefront for Organic and Fair trade practices in Indonesia. Balinese coffee is characterized by sweet chocolaty notes (think milk chocolate versus dark chocolate) and slightly higher acidity than its neighbours (think orange and other sweet citrus). 

Flores/Bajawa Coffee

Harvest Season: May - October

Typical Arrival: October

The island of Flores is also producing good quality Indonesian coffee beans. The coffee beans from its island are called Bajawa coffee. The Bajawa coffee has a low level of acidity and quite strong body. The main flavours of this coffee are chocolate, vanilla and caramel. These Indonesian coffee beans are grown in Bajawa highland, the mountain range in Flores. The product of Bajawa coffee are exported to the US. The Portuguese who discovered this island named it simply Flowers or in their native tongue, Flores, for the beauty of the local plant life. The island is also one of the few places in the world that you can find the endangered Komodo Dragon, the world's largest lizard. Flores is one of the newest entrants to the world of specialty grade coffee but has taken off in popularity very quickly due to it's high quality and exceptional profile. Nearly all of the Arabica production on the island takes place around the town of Bajawa and all of the farmers in the area are organized into 12 different coops. The amazing thing is that all these coops work together in close relationship to bring their coffee to market, imagine that kind of teamwork! Coffee in Flores is processed using the traditional wet-hulled method and is characterized by incredible smoothness along with a big, rich body. Similar in profile to Balinese coffee, Flores coffee is a bit sweeter and more like milk chocolate or cocoa as compared to the baker's chocolate and dark chocolate profiles commonly found in Sumatran coffee.

Java Coffee

Harvest Season: June - October

Typical Arrival: September

The main variety of Java coffee is originally Arabica and Robusta. In the Central Java, the coffee beans are dominated by Arabica while in East Java majority of the coffee beans are Robusta. There are various coffee plantations in Java Island which produce the high-quality Indonesian coffee beans, like Jampit, Belawan and Kayu Mas. The characteristics of this coffee are medium acid, quite viscous, and aromatic kind of tea-like and earthy. Most of the coffee from Java is wet-hulled in the traditional processing method, resulting in the low acidity, syrupy body and complex profile we discussed above with Sumatran coffee. In our experience, the two islands have very similar profiles, but we have found Java to typically be a bit cleaner and sweeter while Sumatra tends toward spicy and earthy.

Sulawesi

Harvest Season: May - November

Typical Arrival: August - September

Formerly known as Celebes, the island of Sulawesi is home to some of the highest (if not the highest) grown coffee in Indonesia. Nearly all of the coffee from this island comes from the southern region of Toraja which is bisected by the Sesean Mountains. Historically, coffee grown on the east side of the mountains ends up in the market town of Minanga, while coffee grown on the west side usually ends up in Sapan. Recently, however, much of the Sulawesi coffee we've been getting is chosen from the best crops from both markets, indicated with the name "Sapan-Minanga." In any case, this extremely high grown coffee (up to 2,000 masl) results in some of the cleanest and smoothest coffee you'll find in Indonesia.

East Timor

Harvest Season: June - September

Typical Arrival: September

Commonly referred to as simply "Timor", it's more politically correct to refer to this region as East Timor since in 2002 the eastern half of the island gained independence from Indonesia, who still controls the western half. So technically this doesn't belong under "Indonesian coffee" but we include it in the same category (much like Papua New Guinea, which is also a nation separate from Indonesia) as the characteristics of the coffee are similar. Coffee has been produced on Timor for almost as long as it's been produced on Java. Dutch colonists planted the bourbon varietal on the island almost 400 years ago. After an epidemic of coffee leaf rust, a new hybrid varietal unique to Timor was introduced: Hibrido de Timor. Unlike their Indonesian neighbors, farmers in Timor process their coffee in the fully washed method, resulting in a much cleaner and crisper profile. We typically roast coffee from Timor a bit lighter as well, usually right around Full City as opposed to Full City + or Vienna as it's unique characteristics and subtleties tend to fade in darker roasts. If you like the body of Indonesian coffee, but prefer the cleaner, more subtle tastes of Central American coffee, then you'll love Timor!

Papua New Guinea

Harvest Season: April - September

Typical Arrival: July

Like East Timor, it's politically incorrect to include Papua New Guinea as an Indonesian coffee as the eastern half of the island is a sovereign nation (having gained independence from Australia in 1975) while the western half is governed by Indonesia and is known simply as Papua. Political correctness aside, the island is home to amazing coffee and we commonly include it with Indonesian coffee, mostly due to the convenience of geographical proximity. It's widely accepted that coffee was introduced to the island during the British colonial period around 1890, though coffee as an export didn't really take off until the mid 1900s. Currently, most of the coffee production in PNG is divided by two parties: large estates (such as the well-known Kimel Estate) and smallholders who grow only a few coffee plants along with subsistence crops. Recently, these smallholders began to organize into coops and have begun to export more and more of the country's coffee crop driving competition and alongside it, higher standards for quality! In fact, coffee from the Timuza coop (which we featured over the Summer), placed 1st in the 2016 National Cupping Competition. Also like coffee from East Timor, PNG coffee is fully washed. This results in a more crisp and subtle cup than coffee from neighboring islands and is preferred by those looking for a cleaner, more acidic profile. Due to this, we tend toward medium roasts with coffee PNG as these attributes begin to disappear with darker roasts.

Toraja Coffee

Harvest Season: June - September

Typical Arrival: September

The main different between Toraja coffee and others Indonesian coffee beans is this coffee doesn’t leave a sour taste in the mouth and the acidity taste doesn’t leave any acid feeling to your tongue since the first gulp. The flavour of Toraja coffee basically same with another Sulawesi coffee like Kalosi, such as low acidity with woody and slightly earthy notes. These distinctive flavours are caused by the traditional technique which is utilized by farmers to pick up th beans.

 


Once in a life time, you need to try all the taste of Indonesian coffee beans. It’ll give you a whole new and awesome experience of drinking coffee.

Indonesia - 2018 coffee production will decline by almost one fifth

Coffee bean output in 2018 may fall to 500,000 tonnes (8.333 mln 60-kg bags), the Association

of Indonesian Coffee Exporters and Industries told Reuters. This compares with 615,000 tonnes in 2017.

Which may result into a raise of prices because of the year shortage.

Secure your orders at current prices, while most of the harvests have begun. You're most welcome to Bali from where we'll take you to Kintamani or other Islands directly to the farmers to visit coffee plantations and proceed to tastings. 100gr Sample available.

sourcing[at]highventures.co.com 

 

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