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Coffee Beans: The Types and Their Characteristics

The coffee beans' source determines its flavour, strength, and taste. Still, if you look at the variety available at the local grocery store, you will only find bags of "Arabica coffee." It is the most common type of coffee in America and accounts for around 70% of the world's coffee production. There are other varieties of coffee beans online, but they are harder to come by.

Since Arabica coffee beans are more common, people look at their source and the roast. It helps identify the flavours and other expectations to have from the coffee, but to fully understand, we have to know more about the green coffee beans. TheHotSip has profiled each one of the coffee beans online with their unique characteristics just for you.


Since it is the most common type of coffee, you will find these beans marketed by every major brand as the best coffee bean. It has a subtle, sweet flavour and the acidity levels for Arabica are quite low. Arabica is farmed in areas high above sea level and needs plenty of rain—Brazil's rainforest, one of the major exporters of Arabica coffee beans. Since the plants are vulnerable to disease, farming them at a grander scale is not possible. It drives up the price, yet Starbucks coffee beans enthusiasts don't mind paying extra for the sweet, smooth taste.


Robusta beans are the second most popular coffee in the world and are more prevalent in the Middle East, Africa, and Europe. As the name suggests, the bean has a strong flavour considered to be on the harsher side by many. The high levels of caffeine are why people prefer Robusta Starbucks coffee beans for brewing their early morning java. The Robusta coffee plant can bear all environmental conditions and does not attract pests either. The only reason it is not as popular as Arabica is because it is known to have a burnt, rubbery taste. Since it is easier to harvest, many farmers prefer it for higher profits. The primary uses for Robusta are darker roasts and economical products like the best instant coffee UK


Liberica coffee beans are scarce and require specialized climates to grow. They are only produced at smaller scales even though it is considered the best coffee bean by a small community. They have a fruity, flowery aroma and flavour notes described as "woody." Liberica coffee used to very popular when the Philippines was a US Territory. Still, a plant disease eliminated most of the bean crops, and with the Philippines declaring independence, their exports fell drastically.


Excelsa, which is technically a genus of the Liberica plant species, has a distinct enough taste to have its separate category. The Excelsa coffee bean is also grown only in Southeast Asia, and its production is deficient. The flavor is fruity and tart with qualities of both light and darker roast. Its unique flavour notes and taste profile make it a delicacy, and it is a very popular green coffee bean amongst the connoisseurs.