We think Indonesian coffee beans are awesome.
In fact, if you were to say, “We’re limiting coffee growing to one country. Choose that country and we’re turning every other country’s coffee farms into condos,” we’d choose Indonesia.
Which is kind of cheating because there’s lots of islands in Indonesia.
However, the fact remains, Indonesia is our favourite source of coffee beans for milk-based coffees. From Sumatra to Bali and back again, Indonesian coffee beans are our favourites.
Ok, that’s not technically true because Haitian coffee beans are our favourites, but they’re notoriously difficult to get in Australia, soooo ….
A bit about Indonesian coffee beans
Indonesia got its first coffee seedlings in the late 17th century via the beard smuggling efforts of Indian man Baba Budan.
It’ll come as no surprise that the early days of coffee production and export meant lots of money for the few — in this case the Dutch East India Company (or VOC) — and bugger all for the many — the Indonesian farmers. This appears a trend in almost every coffee-growing country of the world at one time or another.
Having said that, the VOC was instrumental in spreading coffee to the islands of Sumatra, Sulawesi, Bali and beyond. Which is brilliant, because boy oh boy are there some fine coffees coming from those regions.
Today, almost all of the coffee is grown by farmer collectives and small land owners (small plots of land, not short farmers).
dark chocolate, dark caramel, darkish berries
The Sumatra Mandheling Kuda Mas is the 'drink it any time, day or night' coffee. Give it to non-coffee drinkers. Probably babies, even.
chocolatey, earthy, caramely
Indonesian Mandheling coffee tastes like dirt (but that's a good thing). Forest floor flavours (not even joking), chocolate, and sort of caramelised sugar.
dark chocolate, spices, mushrooms
You want creamy? You want rich? You want earthy and spicy and mushroomy? (HINT: you do). You can have all that plus what's best described as a vibrant acidity and a long finish.