Excelsa coffee, also known as Coffea excelsa or Coffea liberica var. dewevrei, is a unique coffee variety that belongs to the Liberica coffee species (Coffea liberica). Excelsa coffee is distinct from Arabica (Coffea arabica) and Robusta (Coffea canephora) varieties and is known for its distinctive flavor profile and regional cultivation.
Here is some information about the Excelsa coffee variety:
Origin: Excelsa coffee is primarily grown in regions of West and Central Africa, including countries like Cameroon, Ivory Coast, and Nigeria. It is one of the primary coffee varieties within the Liberica group, which is known for its resistance to certain coffee diseases and pests.
Plant Characteristics: Excelsa coffee plants are characterized by their larger and more robust size compared to Arabica coffee plants. They have broad leaves and tend to be more disease-resistant, making them suitable for cultivation in regions where coffee diseases are prevalent. The beans themselves are larger and more irregularly shaped compared to Arabica beans.
Flavor Profile: Excelsa coffee is known for its unique and tart flavor profile. It often exhibits fruity and wine-like notes, along with a sharp acidity. The flavor can be described as complex, with a range of tastes that may include fruity, spicy, and smoky notes. Due to its unique flavor, Excelsa is often used in blends to add complexity.
Usage: Excelsa coffee is typically used in blends rather than as a single-origin coffee. Its distinctive flavor can add depth and character to coffee blends, balancing the taste profile when combined with other coffee varieties.
Cultivation: Excelsa coffee is grown at lower altitudes compared to Arabica coffee and is well-suited for regions with warmer climates. Its disease resistance makes it a valuable option in areas where coffee leaf rust and other diseases are common.
Excelsa coffee’s unique flavor profile sets it apart from other coffee varieties, and it is often appreciated for its ability to add complexity and intrigue to coffee blends. If you are interested in trying Excelsa coffee, you may find it as part of specialty coffee blends or offered by coffee roasters who emphasize its distinctive taste.