Arabica vs. Robusta: Unveiling the Differences and Flavors

9 February 2024

Coffee Beans 


The two most common types of coffee beans, Arabica and Robusta, bring distinct characteristics to your cup. In this blog post, we'll explore the key differences between Robusta and Arabica coffee, so you can better understand your favourite brew.


  1. Growing Conditions and Geography


  • Thrives at higher altitudes, typically between 2,000 to 6,000 feet above sea level.
  • Prefers cooler temperatures and a mild climate.
  • Grows best in regions with consistent rainfall and well-distributed seasons.
  • Arabica coffee is cultivated in countries like Colombia, Ethiopia, Brazil, and Kenya.


  • Grows at lower altitudes, generally between sea level and 2,000 feet.
  • Can tolerate higher temperatures and is more resilient to pests and diseases.
  • Grows well in areas with distinct wet and dry seasons.
  • Robusta coffee is predominantly produced in Vietnam, Brazil, Indonesia, and some parts of Africa.


  1. Flavour Profiles

One of the most noticeable differences between Arabica and Robusta coffee is their flavour and aroma.


  • Arabica beans are known for their complex and nuanced flavour profiles.
  • They often exhibit bright acidity, a wide range of flavours (from fruity to floral to nutty), and a pleasant sweetness.
  • Arabica coffee is prized for its subtle and layered taste, making it a favourite among specialty coffee enthusiasts.


  • Robusta coffee is famous for its bold and strong flavour.
  • Robusta beans have less acidity than Arabica, which can sometimes result in a more straightforward flavour profile.


  1. Caffeine Content

Caffeine content is another critical distinction between these two coffee varieties.


  • Arabica beans have lower caffeine content, typically ranging from 1.2% to 1.5%.
  • The lower caffeine content contributes to the smoother and less bitter taste of Arabica coffee.


  • Robusta beans contain higher caffeine levels, typically between 2.2% to 2.7%.
  • The higher caffeine content lends Robusta its signature strength and bold flavour.


  1. Bean Appearance and Shape


  • Arabica beans are oval or elliptical in shape with a curved crease on one side.
  • They have a sweeter and more delicate aroma.
  • The beans have a smooth surface and are often less uniform in size.


  • Robusta beans are rounder and smaller with a straighter crease on one side.
  • They tend to have a stronger, sometimes harsher aroma.
  • The beans have a rougher surface and are typically more uniform in size.


  1. Cultivation and Market Share


  • Arabica coffee accounts for a significant portion of the specialty coffee market.
  • It's considered a premium coffee and often commands higher prices in the market.
  • Arabica cultivation is more challenging due to its specific requirements, but it's highly sought after by coffee connoisseurs.


  • Robusta coffee is the most widely grown coffee variety globally.
  • It's more robust and less susceptible to diseases, making it a preferred choice in regions with adverse growing conditions.
  • Robusta is often used in espresso blends, instant coffee, and lower-cost coffee products.


In Conclusion

Arabica and Robusta coffee beans each bring their own unique characteristics to the world of coffee. The choice between the two largely depends on personal taste and the desired flavour experience.


Traditional Vietnamese Coffee MUST TRY

100% pure robusta, Buffalo is a bold, powerful yet smooth, clean coffee that effortlessly complements milk. Giving you that double shot of caffeine without breaking the bank.   Not just about exceptional flavour and a strong caffeine punch; Buffalo is also a nod to tradition and the hardworking water buffalo that have worked alongside Vietnamese farmers in the rice fields for centuries. And just like the strong and powerful Buffalo, this coffee will keep you energised to ensure you stay on top of your daily grind.   Indulge in a cup that's strong, bold, and smooth, delivering a full-mouth experience with a delightful hint of chocolate. Straight from farm to your cup through direct trade, it's the perfect blend that respects tradition and taste.
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Crowd Pleaser - East Meets West

Our signature robusta and arabica blend – a match made in heaven! Honeymoon is recommended as a great starting point for those looking to introduce themselves to Vietnamese coffee with something a little familiar but also a little different.   This exquisite blend brings together the powerful essence of robusta balanced against the smoothness of arabica. It's a marriage of flavours that will sweep you off your feet and keep you coming back for more.   Experience the best of both worlds with Honeymoon – a blend that captures the essence of Vietnam's diverse coffee culture with a modern twist.

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Sunshine stands out with its exceptional smoothness and low levels of acidity, like a ray of sunshine in your cup, radiating with light and sweet nuances to elevate your coffee rituals to a whole new level.   Not only delighting your taste buds but also embodying a commitment to empowerment and equality, this coffee is produced by the International Women's Coffee Alliance (IWCA) cooperative in the northwestern region of Son La, Vietnam. This group's mission is to amplify women's participation and representation in the coffee sector, improving the quality of life in coffee-producing communities.   Sunshine stands as a shining example of the unique opportunities and support provided to women in the coffee industry.