If you’re looking for a uniquely delicious coffee experience, then look no further than Cuban coffee. This style of coffee is what Cubans drink on a daily basis.
In this article, we’ll discuss what makes Cuban coffee different from other types, including its growing conditions, roast style, and preparation methods.
Cuban Coffee’s Growing Conditions
The best Cuban coffee brands source their beans from one of three different regions; (1) the Sierra Maestra mountains in the eastern part of Cuba. (2) Escambray in the center, and (3) Pinar del Rio on the western side of the island.
Most of the coffee produced by Cuba is grown in the Sierra Maestra mountains in ideal growing conditions under forest canopies.
These canopies provide shade to the beans which allows them to grow slower and develop more complex flavors.
Cuban Coffee Bean and Roast Type
Both arabica and Robusta beans are grown in Cuba. Depending on the brand, 100% arabica or 100% Robusta beans may be used. But most commonly, Cuban coffee is prepared with a blend of arabica and Robusta beans.
The addition of Robusta beans gives Cuban coffee the strength and boldness that’s usually associated with this style of coffee.
Cuban coffee is also dark roasted to an espresso roast and finely ground. This roast and grind type allows as much flavor as possible to be extracted from the beans.
Everything about Cuban coffee is geared towards making a strong brew.
Brewing Cuban Coffee
Another thing that makes Cuban coffee different is the brewing method. Cuban coffee is brewed exclusively using a Moka pot.
Moka pots are more common in Europe and Latin America. And while these devices aren’t technically espresso makers, they do use steam and pressure to produce a strong, espresso-like cup of coffee.
So, if you’re used to the less intense coffee brewed with a drip maker or pour-over, Cuban coffee can be a bit different!
Preparing Cuban Coffee
The most unique thing about Cuban coffee is how it’s prepared! As we talked about earlier, Cuban coffee is made in a Moka pot. But the process is a bit different from what you’d see in Europe or Latin America.
For starters, the first spurts of coffee that are made are poured into a cup with sugar and whisked into a syrupy foam. The remainder of this coffee is then poured on top of the foam. That sweet foam becomes the crema that rests on top of a cup of prepared Cuban coffee.
Cuban coffee is also commonly prepared with demerara sugar. This difference adds a slightly different flavor to some cups of Cuban coffee you’ll try.
Cuban coffee has a lot of similarities with other types of coffee you may have tried, but in other ways, it’s very different!
Basic Cuban coffee is sweet and strong and can be enjoyed exactly as it is. Or you can add warm milk to make a less intense but creamy café con Leche.
If you’ve never tried Cuban coffee before, this style is definitely worth a try!