With our Trovato Roma espresso beans, it is time to address the elephant in the room. The “R” word. Yes, robusta! Why? Well the Trovato Roma espresso beans contain robusta coffee beans.
Why does robusta get such a bad rap that some people will not touch a coffee with robusta in it. They claim it is inferior and reduces the quality of the 100% arabica coffee blends. They are both right and wrong… read on.
We know arabica beans, like your Brazilian, Ethiopian or Guatemalan, offer softer and rounder tastes, usually with a sweetness that may be complemented by citrus, berry or chocolate flavours. We also know that robusta, brings more harshness, and a taste that is often described as being “woody” or “earthy”. They also contain more caffeine generally.
So yes, the taste profile is different and for many, less pleasing. Yet we have blended it into our Roma espresso beans in such a way as to enhance taste.
Robusta is cheaper than arabica and again, this enhances the label of “inferior” but the reason for its lower price has a lot more to do with its cultivation than its taste.
It is a fast growing species that can be grown at lower altitude with ease. It grows in various climatic conditions too and offers beans within 3 years of planting and it can continue fruiting for 30 years. Contrast that against a 5-6 year growing period for arabica and a 15 year useful seed cycle, and you start to see why robusta is cheaper off the bat.
Robusta also offers more disease resistance and less intensive cultivation practices are needed.
So why then does it not get the wide acceptance that arabica has? The Italians laugh at the rest of the coffee drinking world for this snobbery because they experience all the great properties of a good robusta while we sit and smuggly drink our 100% arabica blends… and miss out. That’s not what our Trovato Roma espresso beans offer.
The reason is that with good selection, roasting and ratio blending, robusta is like that drop of truffle oil in a good pasta! Too much and it takes away the other flavours in a coffee, just like too much truffle oil… but just the right amount and there is a taste explosion from the body robusta brings. That thick crema on a robusta containing espresso is no coincidence after all.
We use robusta in our Trovato Roma espresso beans to bring body to milk containing coffee drinks. We find 100% arabica coffee to underwhelm when adding milk and sugar and so this blend is for the coffee lover who wants the best of both worlds: a coffee with body to enjoy in a cappuccino or as an espresso, where crema, taste and body all meet in perfection.