Best Sumatra Coffee 2021: Buying Guide, Brewing & Roasting Tips: Indonesia is one of the top coffee producers in the world, and there are strong chances that you have heard of its distinctive coffee. Sumatra, one of Indonesia’s central coffee-producing regions, is known for its distinct earthy, bold flavors and low acidity.
So how do you make sure that you buy some of Sumatra’s very best beans to offer? Don’t worry, flying to Indonesia won’t be necessary. We checked many beans to make your shopping simpler and put together this guide to the Best Six Sumatran Coffee Beans 2021. Our comprehensive reviews compare flavor, size, roast quality, and freshness to make sure you get delicious Sumatran beans.
Of all the brands we checked, Sumatra Mandheling Coffee Beans from Volcanica Coffee were our favorites. These are some of the best coffee beans from Sumatra Mandheling out there with a full-body, low acidity, and chocolate, spice, and brown sugar notes. These beans are consistently medium roasted, though somewhat expensive, with the distinctive earthy, herbal flavor of Sumatra. We are certified shade-grown, Fair Trade, and Rainforest Alliance, and thrive in volcanic soil at an elevation of more than 3,000 feet. This coffee is backed up by Volcanic ‘s 100 percent customer service guarantee, and the company is promising a strong Amazon inventory, so you can be sure your beans will come fresh.
Cooper’s Cask’s Sumatra Dark Roast is our second favorite. Available in many sizes of grinds and containers, this coffee boasts an amazing flavor, both earthy and spicy. This Indonesian beans of small-batch are Fair Trade and Organic certified. However, with notes of cedar, plum, and even tobacco, they are satisfyingly smoky. This coffee isn’t particularly cheap but is backed by a 30-day guarantee of satisfaction. Bear in mind that these dark roast beans may be a little sticky, so they may not fit well with all methods of brewing.
Coffee Bean Direct offers the Dark Sumatra Mandheling, another strong whole bean coffee. Less fascinating than the Mandheling from Volcanica, this coffee, which is sold in a large five-pound bag at a fair price, is smooth and aromatic though. This Sumatra coffee is roasted to a dark point, between a French and an Italian roast. Although we considered the overall flavor less absolute, the dark roast accentuates the beans’ chocolate and nut flavors, not particularly bold or complex. These beans are a little bit oily and low in acid, too.
Were you not afraid of grinding coffee beans? AmazonFresh’s Organic Fair Trade Sumatra, available in a well-priced pack of three 12-ounce packets, was our favorite pre-ground coffee. This dark roast Sumatran coffee is certified organic as well as fair trade and has a smoky, chocolatey taste that is delicious but not especially distinctive. It is very low in acidity and comes in easy medium grinding. We found it arrived very fresh and aromatic, so if you are looking for pre-ground beans, it’s a great pick.
The Sumatra Mandheling Whole Bean from Fresh Roasted Coffee was our least favorite brand. This medium roast coffee, while well-priced, lacks the distinct earthy flavor of other Mandheling Beans. This single-origin coffee is cultivated at a high altitude of around 4000 feet in Lintong, Sumatra. The Sumatra Mandheling is smooth, low acidity, and a dark fragrance of chocolate. It’s bold and minimally bitter, though records of less than fresh beans have been found.
Thanks to its humane, sustainable practices, this coffee has also managed to enter our organic recommendations list. Yet, the coffee’s profile itself is far from abysmal. It is a medium-dark roast that makes a sturdy brew. The primary flavor is dried fruit, and slightly smoky notes and hints of caramel complement it.
This is the time for our verdict. The best beans we checked were the Sumatra Mandheling Coffee Beans from Volcanica Coffee, which have just the smooth, complex flavor we expect from a Mandheling. Our second choice, Cask Sumatra Dark Roast from the Cooper, has a unique, smoky flavor. So if you’re a fan of pre-ground beans, we recommend the Organic Fair Trade Sumatra from AmazonFresh, a bold, dark roast coffee that’s conveniently available in medium-sized grounds.
Now that you have looked at our five favorite Sumatran coffee brands, you might wonder what to expect and what to look for. Keep on reading to find out more about what makes Sumatran beans special.
Do you know Indonesia is the fourth largest coffee producer in the world? The nation, which consists of more than 17,000 islands, produces 8 percent of the world’s coffee today. Sumatra is the world’s sixth-largest island, and one of the most popular coffee-producing regions in the country. You’ve probably heard of the other big coffee area, Java, which is so well known that people use its name with coffee interchangeably. Mandheling beans are named for the Mandailing people, a local tribe. They are regarded as the single most important beans grown in Sumatra.
Approximately 85 percent of Indonesia’s coffee beans are Robusta. These highly caffeinated but more bitter beans are not considered high-quality as Arabica beans, making up Indonesia’s other 15 percent crop. But don’t worry: you are unlikely to end up buying Robusta beans, as most in-country beans are consumed or processed into instant coffee. Most of the beans exported are Arabica beans which are grown at higher altitudes and have a smoother, less bitter flavor.
Sumatran coffee is known for its distinctive earthy, herbal flavors. These complex beans, grown in volcanic soil, produce a full-bodied, smooth coffee with hints of chocolate and a small amount of acidity.
Sumatran coffee is especially in demand because of its low acidity. This low-acid variety might be a good alternative for you if you appear to get stomach aches or headaches from coffee. It’s also better on tooth enamel, which can be weakened if you drink a lot of coffee over time. Sumatran beans are lower in acidity because of how they are processed and because they are usually dark roast, which has less acidity of course.
Much of the Sumatra coffee is produced from other areas in a more conventional way than the chocolate. Local farmers use a method called “gilling basah,” or wet hulling, rather than washing or dry processing the beans. To do this, just after picking, they depulp the cherries, then ferment them overnight in bags. This processing method decreases acidity within the Sumatran bean and contributes to its special, earthy taste. This also waters down subtler aromas such as fruits and florals.
Whole vs. Ground Coffee Bean
While ground coffee is convenient, most of our mentioned coffees are the whole bean. This is because, when they’re whole, coffee beans hold flavor for longer. As soon as you grind them, beans start to lose their flavor due to oxygen contact. Hence you may want to buy whole beans for the best flavor and grind them within 15 minutes of brewing.
Sumatran coffee beans’ earthy, chocolatey flavors work best with medium to dark roast stages. Since the more delicate flavors vanish during the process of wet hulling, the Sumatran coffee is not especially appropriate for light roasting. Instead, these beans are mostly used in espresso and other dark blends, as they stand up to intense roasting well.
Aim for beans that have been roasted as recently as possible, for the freshest-tasting coffee. You will want to check on the coffee bags you buy for roast dates and seek to drink coffee between a week and a month after the roast date.
Sumatran coffee is widely available, but between brands, the quality of the beans may vary quite a little. We look forward to our comprehensive reviews of the five best Sumatran coffee brands, plus our quick Sumatran coffee bean guide, helping you find the unique, complex flavors you ‘re looking for. No need to take the extra hassle to choose the best out of plenty of options there in the market. Go through our review and find your favorite one, and buy with just one click from here without any issue.