Being the third largest producer of coffee in the world, Colombia is definitely a heaven for coffee lovers. Colombia boasts with coffee of excellent quality, long tradition, and persistent growers who strive to excel the standards.
That’s why we’re dedicating today’s’ post to Colombian coffee brands. Are you ready to take on this South American journey with me? Let’s have a look at the Colombian coffee brands. Hopefully, I’ll help you answer the question Is Colombian coffee the best coffee in the world? by the time you’ve read the article!
- Coffee Triangle Colombia: Eje Cafetero
- Best Colombian coffee brands
- How to make Colombian coffee
- Colombian coffee history
- Colombian Coffee Brands: a recap
Coffee Triangle Colombia: Eje Cafetero
Also known as Coffee Zone, Coffee Axis or Coffee Belt, there are three regions in Colombia where they grow coffee: Caldas, Quindío, and Risaralda.
The triangle produces the majority of Colombian coffee; it has been considered many times as the best in the world. While that may depend on the taste of each individual (some love animal poop coffee!), there’s no denying that it’s still flavorful and very aromatic.
It’s the area with the soil and the climate that makes it a perfect location to grow world-class coffee. We’re not going into all details about the coffee bean types here, but in short, there are two main types of a coffee bean:
Arabica and Robusta. And Arabica is much more picky about its living area: the climate, the location, and the how you treat it. And Colombia has ideal growing conditions for Arabica. Coffee is grown at higher altitudes, which causes the beans to ripen more slowly and consequently also develop more flavor.
But that’s not all; the coffee in Colombia is divided further by quality: supremo is the best available. Followed by Extra, a middle range quality coffee, and Excelso, which is a mix of the first two, considered inferior.
Did you know that the Colombian coffee region has actually been recognized by the UNESCO a World Heritage Site? According to them, it is “an exceptional example of a sustainable and productive cultural landscape.”
Best Colombian coffee brands
Which are the best coffee brands from Colombia? Let’s have a look at the top 5 picks.
1. Don Pablo Colombian Supremo Coffee
- Medium-dark roast
- Medium bodied with low acidity
With citrus notes and a smooth cocoa-like finish, Don Pablo is a premium Colombian coffee, slow-roasted to order every time, ensuring the highest quality and customer satisfaction.
The history of the brand dates all the way to 1989 when a man and his wife founded it. Their facility is certified both for Food Safety and Organic Production. Coming from a family-owned company, the beans bring you a small-village authentic Colombian vibe in a cup!
Rich and smooth bean supposedly emphasizes the caramelization, which is a result of science and love in the chain of coffee production.
- Makes a rich brew
- Smooth cocoa finish
- Low acidity
- Bitter aftertaste
Perfect breakfast coffee, Don Pablo is a blend of smooth, sweet, yet rich notes that won’t easily disappoint. For best results, keep the beans in the freezer, well-sealed and take out only when you need it.
2. Volcanica Colombian Peaberry
- Medium roast coffee
- Medium to high acidity, bright nutty flavor
A variety of organically-grown and Fair Trade peaberry beans, Volcanica coffee is grown at 5,000 feet elevation which makes the beans more acidic but also more aromatic and flavorful. This coffee type is rich in flavor and also a smoother bean.
The interesting part about growing this type of coffee is that it’s grown in shade, which is a traditional method and also more environmentally friendly.
If you’re looking for a sustainable coffee, Volcanica is your bean of choice. They’re also Rainforest Alliance and Fair Trade.
- Rare and unique
- Grown in volcanic soil
- Fair Trade certified
- Coffee has an after-bite
This coffee is not too strong but it’s definitely full bodied and unique (Peaberry beans make up 5% of the crop, coming from the rarest beans!), they roast the beans after you’ve made your order to ensure the highest quality.
3. Coffee Bean Direct Colombian Supremo
- Light roast coffee
- Medium acidity and balanced body
Think lemon, brown sugar, and milk chocolate when wondering how this coffee tastes. A 100% Arabica coffee, this is an excellent value for money. If you’re not a fan of freezing your coffee, store it in an airtight container (mason jar).
In any case, this is a slow roasted coffee to bring the maximum flavor to your cup, with a sunny and sweet aroma. You can detect lemon, brown sugar, and milk chocolate in there, but don’t worry, the coffee comes free of added flavors.
- 100% Arabica beans
- Great price
- Great for espresso
- Good body
- Can taste mellow
This is a good quality coffee that’s quite decent for the price and flavor value. Still, take into consideration that ordering it from any large online retailer will result in stale and dry beans.
4. Juan Valdez coffee
- Medium roast
- Full bodied, nutty and smooth flavor
A man and a donkey walk into a bar. They make delicious coffee and it becomes a world-wide demand right away. That’s Juan Valdez for you. Ho, he wasn’t a real person, if that’s what you’re wondering. A fictional character or not, his coffee is a real thing though.
And he became the face of a large marketing campaign for coffee Colombia. See more below of history of coffee. Anyway, Juan Valdez is still a respectable and recognizable coffee brand all across the world!
- No bitter aftertaste
- Fairly strong and rich
- Mild flavor
- Too pricey
Juan Valdez is a blend of good and smooth flavor that doesn’t leave any severe and lingering aftertaste. It’s not bad at all; in fact, online reviews claim it’s an excellent medium roast coffee; it’s nutty, mild, and with lovely aroma!
5. Koffee Kult Colombia Huila
- Light to medium roast
- Medium acidity and full body, sweet and crisp finish
- Best to use in: all types of coffeemakers
Packed with flavor and organically sourced, Koffee Kult Colombia is a delicious coffee with a pleasing taste and packaged right after roasting. That means you get a fresh and decent quality to your doorstep.
This is a US-based artisanal roaster and family-based; they offer Colombian Huila beans of high quality. These beans are grown at 6,230ft/1,900m and processed by the wet method before they sun-dry them or dry them mechanically.
With a mild cherry taste and notes of caramel, this coffee is 100% Arabica blend of Colombian bean varieties.
- Artisan roasted coffee
- Very aromatic
- Ethically Sourced
- Resealable closure package
- Dry beans
If you’re looking for a strong cup of black coffee, this may not be for you. While it makes a lovely aromatic cup of joe, some claim it’s not the best coffee experience.
How to make Colombian coffee
There are plenty of methods online that promise to teach you Colombian style coffee with… khem, instant coffee, weird coffee, bat shit coffee, and many other types of coffee.
I’ve searched far and wide and found this recipe on Colombian coffee with aguapanela. I’ve never tried it but if you have, let us know in the comments below what are your thoughts on the recipe.
There are two methods to be most recommended when it comes to brewing Colombian coffee:
- Espresso (it requires medium-dark roast and many of Colombian coffee beans are)
- Aeropress (very often recommended for Colombian coffee beans)
Apart from that, if you’re actually heading to Colombia, make sure to stop by at any of the street vendors and get yourself a cup of tinto. Tinto or inky water is sold in small cups for a few cents a cup. It’s a must-try for the real Colombian experience. Okay, it’s not the highest quality but it’s popular.
According to Thrillist and their article on Colombian coffee culture,
Tinto doesn’t refer to one particular style of preparation: it could be everything from a simple drip brewer to a pour-over cloth coffee filter (looks like a sock), to just putting grounds in the bottom of a cup and splashing them with hot water. It’s basically the Colombian equivalent of a “cup of Joe,” in that you probably won’t hear a graphic designer ordering it over ice, and more sophisticated drinkers would shy away from the label.
Colombian coffee history
Coffee has become a part of Colombia’s national identity, but it wasn’t always so. It entered the county in the 18th century and they started exporting it only in the 19th century. During the 20th century, coffee somehow became the main export of Colombia. The farmers refused to grow it at first since they believed it took too long to harvest the beans (which is about 5 years).
Nowadays, the majority of farmers grown coffee on small parts of the land. Many of the farms are family-owned and the majority of coffee growers are a part of FNC or National Colombian Coffee Growers Federation.
This group has worked hard to protect the Colombian coffee industry. It was first established back in the 1927 with the goal to represent the interests of the coffee growers.
In 1959 they have created the famous Juan Valdez, an imaginary character (and his donkey) that helped to establish the reputation of Colombian coffee worldwide. It has been an incredibly successful marketing campaign.
Feel free to see a short video about the history of Coffee in Colombia here:
Nowadays, the FNC works to
reach our goal of improving the quality of life of Colombian coffee growers. The FNC also supports Colombian growers in different areas such as: research and development to optimize the costs of production and improve the quality of coffee, technical assistance to coffee growers…, ensuring the Colombian coffee grower receives market premiums, carrying out programs to benefit the growers, their community and their environment
Colombian coffee taste
In general, Colombian coffee has a strong aroma, medium to high body, and high acidity. They’re clean, mild, but that’s just very generally saying. You can see more about the coffee profiles below each coffee type on the list.
Colombian Coffee Brands: a recap
Despite the fact that the majority of coffee beans from Colombia are Arabica type, it is nevertheless a county of great diversity in terms of beans, flavors, and aromas. They’re of high quality no matter the fact that they are mostly produced in the same way.
Coffee beans from Colombia bring a lovely variety into your coffee routine; even if you’re not too keen on traveling there, you can bring the Colombian vibe into your kitchen with tasty and freshly roasted beans.
While there are many options to choose from, in terms of flavor, aroma, quality, there is one of the Colombian coffee brands that exceeds all the rest. Volcanica Peaberry is definitely a great twist on coffee; it’s both Fair Trade Certified and quite unique altogether. The aftertaste might bite you in the tongue and not everyone is a fan of that, but overall it’s great value for money.
What are your favorite Colombian coffee brands?