Blog

The first taste is with our eyes; Latte Art

Latte art has become such an essential part of our coffee experience that we no longer just appreciate but also expect it. For baristas around the world, its emergence has opened an exciting world of artistic expression while presenting a new challenge to keep on creating. The art keeps them interested and competitive with their fellow baristas, a skill they constantly demonstrate through creativity of the design, contrast and its consistent execution across multiple drinks. But latte art has...

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The Elephant in the Room; Kenya’s coffee crisis

Coffee plays a crucial role in the livelihoods of millions of rural households in many developing countries. However, the coffee market continues to be a showcase of the need to address the commodity crisis on both a global and local scale. In Kenya, its production continues to decline despite Government efforts to revive what was once the country’s leading foreign exchange earner. Kenya's coffee currently grows under 114,000 hectares total area, of which about a third (3 300 large-scale coffee...

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The most famous Arabica Coffee varieties

The most famous Arabica coffee varieties (Source: world coffee research organization) Bourbon Bourbon was created on the Island of Bourbon,in the Indian Ocean off the East Coast of Africa,  in the 18th century. It is the other of the two main varieties of Arabica along with Typica.  The variety arrived into Brazil late 19th century and quickly spread around South and Middle America. Bourbon isn’t an extremely productive variety but produces an excellent cup of coffee. Multiple variations have been developed...

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Varieties of Coffee

One may think the only varieties of coffee around the world are just Arabica and Robusta, but certainly not! However, Coffea Arabica, known as Arabica coffee and Coffea canephora, known as Robusta coffee are the two main species of coffee that are cultivated today. Arabica accounts for 75-80 percent while Robusta accounts for about 20 percent and differs from Arabica coffees in terms of taste. Robusta is more productive and less susceptible to plant diseases such as leaf rust...

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A Brief History of the Kenyan Coffee

The origin of coffee is relatively close to Kenya. However, getting it there was a difficult task and full of bloodshed. The coffee was controlled by Arabs who came into the country through coastal trade connections from as early as the 9th century. They enslaved thousands of Kenyans to work on the coffee plantations in both Kenya and Arabia. The British settlers then followed around 1900 and quickly assumed control over the country which led to more bloodshed. The country’s...

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The spread of coffee in Europe

Many Turkish merchants began to sell coffee beans abroad in 1600 and European travelers to the Near East brought back stories of an unusual dark black beverage. By the 17th century, coffee had made its way to Europe and was becoming popular across the continent. ITALY, Venice Europeans got their first taste of coffee in 1615 when Venetian merchants who had become acquainted with the drink in Istanbul carried it back with them to Venice. This was after tea which had appeared...

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The Cultivation and Spread of Coffee

The Arabian Peninsula Cultivation and trade of coffee began on the Arabian Peninsula from where it traveled to the East. By 15th century, coffee was being grown in the Yemeni district of Arabia owing to the favorable climate and soils. It was introduced to Sri Lanka by Muslim traders and travelers in 1505. Fertile coffee beans, the berries with their husks unbroken, were taken to South-West India by a Baba Budan on his return from pilgrimage to Mecca in the 17th...

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The Origin of Coffee; 2

The Arabic word for coffee, kahwah, is also one of several words for wine. In the process of stripping the cherry husk, the pulp of the bean was fermented to make potent liquor. Some argued that the Qu'ran forbade the use of wine or intoxicating beverages, but other Muslims in favor of coffee argued that it was not an intoxicant but a stimulant. The dispute over coffee came to a head in 1511 in Mecca. The governor of Mecca,...

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The Origin of Coffee; 1

The original home of the coffee plant is Abyssinia, now Ethiopia. Kaffa, the province in the south-western highlands where they first blossomed gave its name to coffee. Although the formal cultivation and use of coffee as a beverage began early in the 9th century, coffee trees grew wild in the forests of Kaffa prior to that. Thus, many people in that region were familiar with the berries and the drink. According to Ethiopia’s ancient history, an Abyssinian goat-herd, Kaldi, who...

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