From cultivations in countries with an equatorial or tropical climate, favored by constantly mild temperatures and the right degree of humidity, to daily consumption in various forms and flavours.
The coffee's journey starts from the production of green coffee, obtained by drying the berries.
Coffea plant belongs to the Rubiaceae family. It is an evergreen with beautiful opposite, glossy, dark green, oval leaves with slightly wavy edges. The flowers are white, grouped in clusters, starry and very fragrant. The fruits, called drupes or cherries, which they resemble in color and size even if they have a more oval shape. As maturation proceeds, the skin changes color, going from green to yellow until it reaches a bright red, dark orange and purplish depending on the origin. The coffee fruits grow continuously along the branches and ripen in a period of between 8 and 12 months.
Maturation is linked to the amount of sugar present in the fruit: the more sugar there is in the fruit more is better.
Some producers believe that a mix of cherries with various degrees of ripeness adds complexity to the coffee, it being understood that the fruits must never be very ripe or unripe, because this would lead to an unpleasant flavour.
The coffee plants are grown in the range between the 25th parallel of north latitude and the 25th parallel of south latitude which, due to temperature, exposure to the sun and the nature of the soil (terroir), are ideal for their growth.
Inside the fruit, surrounded by a sweet white-yellow pulp (mesocarp) and a thin layer of mucilage, there are usually the two seeds, arranged facing each other on the flat side where the typical groove is located . They are protected by parchment, a rigid cream-colored casing, and in the inner part by a very thin film, the silver membrane or silver skin.
The cherries are de-pulped and fermented in large tubs of water for 12-36 hours. This is followed by the drying phase, which takes place in the sun at the end of which the grains lose their parchment.
The washed method produces a cleaner tasting, fruity and floral coffee with a pleasant acidity.
SEMI WASHED PROCESS
The ripe cherries are de-pulped with a mechanical system and then left to dry in the sun. Once dried, the beans are cleaned of pulp residues and parchment.
Depending on the amount of mucilage left, a distinction is made between Yellow, Red and Black and White Honey.
The cherries are left to dry in the open air on surfaces exposed to the sun with the pulp still attached. The drying process lasts 2 to 3 weeks, during which the cherries are turned several times a day to avoid mold or fermentation. The final stage is the removal of the outer layers of the cherries in order to obtain only the coffee beans present inside.
Without roasting there would be no coffee.
It is only during roasting that chemical transformations take place inside the bean, which is quickly brought to high temperatures, and the more than 800 aromas that characterize the taste, aromas and scent of coffee are formed.
The roasting takes place at a temperature of 180-205° Celsius degree, where the beans undergo a first crack signaled by a small crackling due to the pressure of the steamed water.
It is a typical roasting of northern European countries, such as Finland.
The roasting temperatures range from 210° to 220° Celsius degree, above the first crack but below the second crack, which leads to the breaking of the fibers and the release of carbon dioxide.
It is also called American because it is widely used in the United States.
It has the characteristic dark brown color, chocolate, almost black. The beans are shiny and have a layer of oil on the surface. Roasting takes place at 240° Celsius degree but can also exceed 250° Celsius degree.
It is typical of southern Italian espresso coffee.
Coffea Arabica covers about 60% of world production and is considered the most valuable variety, characterized by oval and elongated beans, with a sinuous furrow.
It originates in the mountainous territory of Ethiopia, was cultivated for the first time in today's Yemen and grows in tropical areas above 900 metres, especially in Central and South America. It is sensitive to heat and humidity and prefers shaded areas and temperatures not exceeding 20 degrees. The coffee obtained from it is aromatic, fragrant, sweet, round and slightly acidic.
Originally from West Africa, Coffea Canephora, or more simply Robusta, is today cultivated above all in South-East Asia, from the plains to 900 meters above sea level. It has round beans, with a straight groove, and gives a coffee with a bitter, full-bodied taste, with notes of chocolate and a thick crema. On the Italian market, it is used to strengthen the Arabica, giving more body and character to the blend.
The ability to mix raw coffee beans of various species to obtain unique aromas takes the word blending: an art in which Italians excel. The composition of the blend serves to give the best aromatic balance, harmonizing the aspects of taste, aroma, body, acid-bitter sensation and can be made before or after roasting. If done earlier, it does not guarantee cooking at the ideal temperature for each species of grain, with an evident repercussion on the final quality level of the blend. Mixing after roasting is, on the other hand, a lengthy process which personalizes the cooking of the different varieties of green coffee with a higher result in terms of quality.