Profiles in Coffee: Indonesia
In our first installment, we take you to the archipelago of Indonesia. Comprising more than 17,500 islands, Indonesia is the fourth largest coffee producer in the world. Coffee was introduced to the island of Java by Dutch colonists at the end of the 17th century. Indonesia was one of the first places, outside of the plant's native Yemen and Ethiopia, where coffee was grown. More than 90% of Indonesia's coffee is grown by smallholders, many of whom are members of Indonesia's nineteen farmer's co-ops. Indonesian coffees tend to share the following features: low acidity, heavy body, intense earthy/foresty flavors and chocolate roast notes. These features are most pronounced in coffees from Sulawesi (also called Celebes) and Sumatra, and are mostly developed after the coffee cherries have been picked, due to the semi-washed (or wet-hulled) method by which the beans are processed. Java also features heavy body and thickness, but with a cleaner finish. Coffees from New Guinea tend to have lighter body still, with brightness, complexity, and sweet-fruited aromatics.