Every day around the world millions of people start their day with a cup of coffee to get energy. This is a drink considered to be one of the three most enjoyed drinks in the world along with water and tea, yet offers a unique, diverse sensation of coffee beans.
Depending on how baked and brewed, the coffee beans offer different flavors, aromas, and different visual appearance. Coffee is also greatly appreciated for giving a lot of energy, but it brings a relaxing effect on the body, and improves clarity of mind. Because it has an ergogenic, or its effect has also been studied extensively to improve a person’s performance. Let’s take a closer look at coffee.
The History of Coffee
Actually, the origin of coffee is old and unknown, but many legends talk about this magic seed. One legend emerged around the year 850 AD depicting a man named Kaldi, who was herding a goat in the plateau of the Ethiopian plateau. Then he noticed the goat that looked energetic and did not get bored or wanted to sleep after eating the red cherries from the coffee tree.
Kaldi, decided to taste the cherry itself. He liked the flavors that came from the cherries of the coffee tree, then he took some of them to the nearby monastery to share with the monks. Initially, he was greeted with great skepticism and ridicule, but soon the monks began experimenting with the coffee beans brought by Kaldi. They then grill the beans by the fireplace and then grind them to be brewed into aromatic and dark drinks. So that’s where a cup of hot coffee brewed the first born!
Shortly after that, coffee began to be known throughout the region in Ethiopia. Ethiopian tribes began to make energy drinks by mixing the coffee cherries with butter to give strength and stamina to the soldiers.
They also began to exchange coffee beans with Arab traders. It is said that the coffee trees are abundant and grow wild in Ethiopia, then taken to the Arabian Peninsula by boat and first cultivated there. From there, coffee plants and coffee beans quickly spread to Persia, Egypt, Syria, Turkey and surrounding areas.
In the 15th century, coffee was well established in the Middle East, and coffee shops began to appear in the cities. The habit of drinking coffee quickly became an important part of social life. Men will gather to enjoy a cup of coffee, talk, listen to music, and discuss current events.
In the 17th century, coffee spread to Europe where the pope is said to love the drink so much that he allows coffee to be enjoyed by the public. Initially, it was sold in pharmacies as a treatment medicine, but soon coffee houses began to open in Europe.
How are Coffee Beans Grown and Harvested
Coffee trees are plants that grow in tropical climates where the weather is always warm. The yearly rainy season that triggers many coffee trees blooms a lot. The coffee tree flowers are fine white and fragrant and reminiscent of the scent of jasmine.
The flowers last only a few days, then about seven to nine months later (Arabica) or until 11 months later (Robusta) appeared coffee cherries. Inside a coffee cherry, there are usually two seeds – what we recognize as green beans.
Arabica and Robusta are the two main coffee beans grown for commercial purposes, but there are significant differences between the two. As the name implies, Robusta coffee is stronger. They are easy to grow and can thrive in warmer climates and strong winds. They can grow in the lowlands – between sea level and a height of about 800 meters – which makes them suitable for planting in large flat areas. This, in turn, allows them to be mechanically harvested with machines that shake all the cherries from the tree. Robusta also produces more coffee beans than Arabica, so the price is more efficient in the production process.
Meanwhile, Arabica coffee grows and develops well in high places in the mountains. Because these coffee varieties grow on steep hillsides, so mechanical harvest with heavy machinery is ineffective, for this type of coffee is usually grown on a smaller scale. Manually harvesting is the right method for arabica coffee with ripe fruit at different levels, so it should be selectively selected. The pickers check the trees every 8 to 10 days and just throw the cherries that are at the peak of maturity. This method is more labor intensive, making Arabica coffee more expensive to produce. The result, arabica coffee beans is more subtle, has a taste sweeter and softer. Its acidity level is higher than Robusta coffee, while its caffeine content is about half that of Robusta. At present, Arabica is the most widely grown coffee type and accounts for about 70-80 percent of world coffee production.