TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Two Tempo journalists - who are also baristas - campaigning for Indonesian Arabica specialty coffees, Praga Utama and Syailendra Persada, briefly broke down the grades that differentiate specialty coffee beans that further emphasize the value of Indonesia’s Arabica specialties.
“You’ll be able to understand why Indonesian coffee is globally distinguishable once you taste Arabica specialty,” said Praga in a workshop on coffee that was held during the Tempo Media Week 2018 Palmerah Edition on Saturday, December 15.
According to Praga, who's a barista in Tempo’s #ngopidkantor community, Arabica beans are divided into three grades consisting of; Grade 3 that is often used by the coffee industry for commercial uses; Grade 2 or premium or gourmet that is usually sold to franchise coffee shops, and lastly the Grade 1 Arabica specialty.
Praga explains that coffee beans can only be considered Arabica specialties only if it meets three quality requirements. Firstly, the coffee cherries must be harvested at its ripest signaled by its color red. It also should only contain a maximum defect rate of 4 percent and must score a cupping test from 80-100.
“Specialty beans score over 80, premiums score between 70-80, while commercial beans score a cupping test under 70,” Praga explained.
Syailendra, who’s also a #ngopidikantor barista, said that Arabica beans are mainly coffee cherries planted above 1,400 meters above sea level which distinguishes it from its robusta counterpart. He also noted that there are enough cafes that currently sell Arabica specialty coffees; “The cafes are not plentiful but they exist. They usually are [established] by true coffee lovers,” he said.