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Time for a lesson in coffee – brought to you by WK’s newest intern!

July 25, 2013

Because Wamama Kahawa is all about coffee, we would like to give some more information about it J There is a lot to tell about coffee and all the steps in the process. For now, we keep it simple by answering the question: what is coffee??

Coffee is a drink you get after mixing roasted and ground coffee beans with hot water. Coffee beans are the seeds or berries from the coffee plant or coffee tree, which grow in humid areas between the tropic of Cancer and Capricorn, for example Ethiopia, Kenya, Brazil, Guatamala, Indonesia and of course Tanzania. They are many kinds of coffee plants but the most well known and most used are Arabica and Robusta.

At Wamama Kahawa, we use Arabica coffee. Arabica plants grow in higher areas up to 1000-2000meter on mountain- and volcano hills. The plants are sensitive to diseases and more delicate and so the price of Arabica coffee is high. Arabica coffee is characterized as soft, aromatic and of high quality. Arabica takes up 70% of the coffee in the world. The other plant, Robusta, grows in lower areas, is more resistant to diseases and the taste is more strong and bitter than Arabica. Robusta is cheaper than Arabica but less popular because of the lower quality. Robusta is usually blended in packaged ground coffee or used to make instant coffee. Beans from the Arabica and Robusta plants are often mixed up in the cups you drink or packages you buy, but at Wamama Kahawa, we use 100% Arabica coffee only.

After 9-11 months the coffee berries are ready to be picked and the pulp can be removed. Removing the pulp is a precise job and it happens with the use of water (wet process) or they get dried in the sun (dry process). In Tanzania, the wet process is used. When the pulp is gone, the green beans go through a process called “hulling”, which involves the removal of the dry skin covering the beans (parchment). After that, the coffee bean is ready to be roasted and/or ground. Mixing ground beans with hot water produces a concentrated bitter drink with aroma of, for example, lemon, black berries, nuts, chocolate or wine. The final taste of the coffee drink could vary depending all the factors in the process, i.e., the origin of the beans, the processing method, the degree and method of roasting, and the brewing method.

The first coffee drinkers in the world were in all probability Ethiopians. Legend has it that a young Ethiopian shepherd boy saw how happy and energetic his animals were after eating leaves and berries from some plants and that was how coffee was discovered. Later, the  Arabs (we don’t know how they exactly met with coffee) start to use coffee as a medicine and a way to stay awake and they exported coffee to other parts of the world. Now, hundreds of years later, coffee is drunk all over the world and we are happy and thankful to serve you this amazing drink at Wamama Kahawa!


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