Coffee is a huge part of Philippine culture, with the drink being a part of most Filipinos’ morning rituals. While the Philippines doesn’t have an established coffee culture like Vietnam or Italy, Filipino coffee is still something that local coffee enthusiasts should be proud of. If you’re looking for reasons why you should support Philippine coffee, then simply take a look at your morning drink.
More than the finished coffee drinks, the Philippines also produces coffee beans which results in your usual caffeine orders. Coffee lovers know the value of these beans--after all, without them, you wouldn’t be able to get your favorite drinks.
For the average coffee drinker (and perhaps even for some seasoned connoisseurs!) knowing that coffee comes from these beans might be the extent of their knowledge. However, being able to tell the difference between the coffee beans is half the fun when it comes to selecting your perfect roast.
Check out our guide to Philippine coffee beans and find the perfect roast for you with our coffee beans for sale.
Coffee Culture in the Philippines
Filipinos are among the top consumers of coffee. After all, for us, coffee isn’t just a morning caffeine fix. Pinoys drink coffee in the morning, noon, and even at night! In fact, for some provinces like Batangas, coffee has become a large part of their culture so much so that these provinces are considered as the best places to get coffee.
Although consumption is a large part of the country’s coffee culture, another thing we can look at is how Philippine coffee is produced. With coffee being such a huge part of our daily routines, it’s actually shocking to know that the Philippines imports a lot of coffee despite being able to produce coffee beans. There are implications, of course, towards the local coffee farmers. In particular, farmers tend to face production issues and not being able to use their harvests because of the number of imports that the country has. Still, the large part of coffee in our daily rituals makes the drink a necessary part of our lives. Thus, for local coffee lovers, it’s important to find high quality and ethically sourced Philippine coffee beans.
Philippine Coffee Beans
While barako might be the quintessential Filipino coffee in the minds of Pinoy coffee lovers, there are actually different kinds that coffee enthusiasts can explore. Aside from the different blends, you can also explore through the different varieties of coffee bean available locally. These beans produce different flavor profiles, so you can definitely find something for you.
Here’s our guide to the different varieties of coffee beans available in the Philippines:
Among the many varieties of coffee beans available, arabica is among the most popular coffee bean options. It is the most acidic of all the coffee beans in the Philippines and it has a flavor profile that ranges from sweet, soft, tangy, floral, smooth, fruity, and bright. Arabica is usually harvested from Benguet and Sagada, making it one of the more common kinds of coffee available in the country.
Taking up 70% of the world coffee market, Arabica is used for a lot of different specialty drinks. It is often regarded as the coffee bean with the best quality, the Arabica coffee bean can be prepared using all brewing methods.
Another popular variety of coffee beans is the Robusta which makes up 25% of the coffee market. This popular variety has polarizing flavor profiles, with some saying that the bean has a rather harsh and burnt taste when brewed. On the other hand, some coffee lovers report that Robusta had a similar flavor profile to chocolate. This might be because of the high caffeine content of Robusta beans; it is estimated to have twice the amount of caffeine of Arabica beans. Robusta is commonly used for the production of instant coffee, but it is also added in espresso blends and used in luxury civet coffees.
This variety can be found in Ilocos and Kalinga. Coffee farmers might like Robusta more too because it is easy to grow, high-yielding, and can naturally repel insects.
Barako coffee in the Philippines usually comes from the Liberica beans. This particular coffee bean is only produced and consumed in Malaysia and in the Philippines, particularly in the provinces of Cavite and Batangas. For those who have not tried out Batangas coffee, Liberica is said to have a flavor profile that is quite similar to Robusta. Coffee lovers describe the flavor as pungent, intense, bitter, and earthy.
Preparing kapeng barako isn’t particularly hard to brew as your grandparents will tell you. Today, if you want to bring out the best flavor in your Liberica coffee beans, you might want to try brewing it via the French press or drip method.
Internationally, Excelsa is recognized as a variant or subtype of Liberica beans, but here it is still sold as a different coffee bean in the Philippines. Coffee lovers describe the beans’ aroma as something akin to jackfruit. The Excelsa bean grows on tall trees and has a similar shape to Liberica beans. Ultimately, experts would say that Excelsa shares a similar flavor profile to Liberica, with the main defining feature between the two is the latter’s mix of light and dark roast aromas.
Arabica VS Other Philippine Coffee Beans
Of course, there’s always the question of which coffee bean remains supreme. Each coffee bean has its own merits with flavor profile, budget, and even availability to consider. Depending on how you want your coffee, While you may want to participate in an extensive discussion discussing the pros and cons of arabica vs barako coffee, ultimately it all comes down to your taste.
Finding the right beans
Getting your perfect cup of coffee starts with the right beans. Coffee beans in the Philippines make the most exquisite coffee. All you have to do is find a store that provides you with high quality and affordable coffee beans, and you can have your perfect brew each time.
Whether you’re looking for Arabica, Robusta, or Liberica, you can check out our catalogue for your premium Philippine coffee bean of choice.