Question: “What’s the difference between arabica and robusta coffee?”

Miles Priestley is asked questions like this all the time — listen to his answer in this video, where he explains in a way we can all understand.


Teena:  Miles, this question is about the difference between arabica and robusta coffee — I never did understand the difference. Can you help me with that?

Miles: Absolutely! I can try and shed some light on that. There are two main species in the Coffea family — there’s coffea Arabica and coffea Robusta and they are two totally different tree types.

Coffea Arabica is grown at more higher altitudes, it is a higher grade of coffee, lower in caffeine than the Robusta beans. Coffea Robusta is grown closer to sea level — it’s higher in caffeine. It has quite an earthy – almost licorish, malty taste to it. It’s almost (depending on who you are) undrinkable on its own. It can go perfectly in a blend – it gives the blend some “edge” so as a third bean or a fourth bean in a blend, it can give it a nice edge that sometimes people are looking for to give it a liquoricey taste which is what we do with our blend that has just a small amount of Indian robusta in it.

Yes, so the robusta is a lower grade coffee bean, higher in caffeine, quite earthy.  The arabica beans are higher in quality, lower in caffeine and have various other attributes.

Teena: Great! Thank you!

Miles: No problem!

— End Transcript —

What's the difference between arabica and robusta coffee?

Do you have a preference for either arabica or robusta coffee? We’d love to hear your thoughts —  type us a message in the Comments below if you have a spare moment.

Did you like this interview with Miles? You might also like these questions Miles has been asked:

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If you’d like to try our delicious coffee, you might consider the locally roasted Guatemalan coffee beans, Kenyan beans, locally roasted Sumatran coffee beans, or our other delicious coffee beans >>