What Is Considered The Best Coffee In The World?

What is considered the best coffee in the world? This question sparks endless debates among coffee lovers. While tastes are subjective, several objective criteria help identify top contenders.

This article will explore:

  1. Best coffee beans – Highlighting the most sought-after beans.
  2. Best coffee countries – Examining regions known for exceptional coffee.
  3. Best coffee brands – Showcasing brands that set the standard.

You’ll discover why Blue Mountain coffee from Jamaica is so coveted, even though its limited supply. Whether you’re a casual drinker or a coffee connoisseur, you’ll find intriguing insights into what makes a coffee truly exceptional.

Evaluating the World’s Best Coffee

When analysing the best coffee, objective criteria help provide a clear judgment. The Specialty Coffee Association (SCA) evaluates coffee on a 100-point rating system, focusing on several key sensory attributes:

  • Fragrance/Aroma: The smell of dry coffee grounds and brewed coffee. For example, you’ll detect complex floral notes or deep chocolate scents in high-quality beans.
  • Flavour: The taste profile, considering sweetness, bitterness, and distinctive flavours. Geisha coffee from Panama often showcases jasmine and tropical fruit notes.
  • Aftertaste: The lingering taste after the coffee is swallowed. High-rated coffees, like Jamaica Blue Mountain, have a clean and enduring finish.
  • Acidity: The brightness or tanginess in the flavour. Ethiopian coffee from the Sidama region shows vibrant acidity.
  • Body: The texture or mouthfeel. Sumatran coffee typically has a heavier body.
  • Balance: The overall harmony of flavour, acidity, body, and aroma.

Each category receives a score from 1 to 10, with the total score out of 100. A score of 90 or above indicates exceptional quality, like the 2022 Geisha Lavés from Colombia, which scored 90/100.

The Influence of Processing Methods

The method used to process coffee beans greatly impacts their final flavour. Here’s a look at key processing methods:

  1. Washed Process: This method removes the fruit from the bean before drying. It produces a clean taste and highlights the coffee’s acidity. For instance, Central American coffees often use this method.
  2. Natural Process: Here, the beans dry with the fruit still attached. This results in fruity and complex flavours. Many Ethiopian coffees use this method.
  3. Honey Process: This hybrid method keeps some fruit mucilage on the bean during drying. It provides a balance between the clean notes of washed coffee and the sweetness of natural coffee. Costa Rica is known for this method.
  4. Wet Hulled Process: This method involves removing the parchment layer before drying the coffee. It results in earthy and full-bodied flavours, as seen in Sumatran coffee.

Understanding these methods helps you appreciate the influence of processing on the final cup and contributes to identifying the best coffee that suits your taste.

Celebrated Coffee Varieties Globally

  • Jamaica Blue Mountain: The coffee plant produces beans with a mild flavour, low acidity and a refined balance. Cultivation occurs at high altitudes and offers hints of floral and nutty notes.
  • Kopi Luwak: This unique coffee bean undergoes a special fermentation process inside the digestive system of the civet cat, resulting in a smooth flavour profile with low bitterness but controversial production methods.
  • Ethiopian Coffee: Ethiopia, known as the birthplace of coffee, produces beans with a wide range of flavours like bright fruitiness and floral notes, specifically from regions like Yirgacheffe and Sidamo.
  • Geisha Coffee: Originating from Ethiopia but famous in Panama, Geisha beans exhibit a distinct flavour profile including jasmine, bergamot, and tropical fruit notes. It often achieves high scores in coffee reviews.
  • Colombian Coffee: Known for its balanced flavour, medium acidity, and caramel sweetness, Colombian beans benefit from diverse microclimates and are often considered amongst the world’s best coffee beans.
  • Central America: Countries like Costa Rica and El Salvador produce coffee beans with bright acidity and citrusy flavours. The volcanic soil and high altitudes contribute to the unique taste profiles.
  • South America: In regions like Colombia, beans develop mellow acidity and pronounced sweetness due to varied microclimates and optimal coffee-growing conditions.
  • Africa: Ethiopian coffee, grown at high elevations, results in complex and aromatic profiles with floral, fruity, and wine-like notes.
  • Asia: Sumatran coffee beans are notable for their full body, low acidity, and earthy, spicy tones, which are influenced by wet-hulled processing methods and tropical climates.
  • Pacific Islands: Hawaii’s Kona coffee, grown on volcanic slopes, features bright acidity, medium body, and delicate nuances of fruit and nuts.

These celebrated coffee varieties represent the diversity and complexity found in the world’s best coffee.

Brewing Techniques for Premium Coffee

To achieve the best coffee experience, employing the right brewing techniques is important. Each method provides unique characteristics, enhancing the distinctive flavours in your best coffee beans.

Pour Over

  • Procedure: Use 25–27g of medium-fine ground coffee and 415ml of just-boiled filtered water.
  • Total Brew Time: Approximately 3 minutes for optimal extraction.

The pour over method highlights delicate flavours and acidity. It’s popular among specialty coffee enthusiasts for its control over water temperature and flow rate.


  • Procedure: Use 18–20g of medium-fine ground coffee and about 250ml of just-boiled filtered water.
  • Total Brew Time: Around 2 minutes.

The Aeropress yields a smooth, full-bodied cup, ideal for exploring single-origin beans like those from El Salvador or Ethiopia.


  • Procedure: Use about 18g of finely ground coffee and extract using an espresso machine.
  • Total Brew Time: 25–30 seconds per shot.

An espresso machine quickly extracts concentrated coffee, delivering a bold flavour and creamy texture. It’s highly favoured for dark roast and robusta coffee beans.

French Press

  • Procedure: Use coarsely ground coffee and let it steep in hot water for about 4 minutes.
  • Total Brew Time: Around 4 minutes.

The French press method maximises extraction, resulting in rich, full-bodied coffee. It suits grounds like Sumatran coffee, known for earthy and herbal notes.

  • Procedure: Steep coarse ground coffee in cold water for 12–24 hours.
  • Total Brew Time: 12–24 hours.

Cold brew delivers a smooth, less acidic coffee with subtle flavour nuances. It’s perfect for hot weather, offering a refreshing alternative to hot brews.

By using these methods, you can improve the inherent flavours in your coffee beans, ensuring a premium coffee experience each time.

Where to Acquire World Class Coffee

Coffee lovers seek the finest beans for an optimal brew. Specialty coffee brands ensure a premium experience. Consider the following tips for selecting authentic quality beans:

  1. Check the Origin: Identify the coffee’s origin. Single origin beans from Colombia, Ethiopia, and Costa Rica often guarantee high quality.
  2. Examine the Roast Date: Freshness matters. Freshly roasted beans typically provide superior flavour. Look for a recent roast date.
  3. Flavour Profile: Preference varies. Beans differ in flavour notes like dark chocolate, caramel, or berries. Choose based on your taste.
  4. Certifications: Trustworthy certifications like Rainforest Alliance or Organic ensure ethical production and high-quality standards.
  5. Brand Reputation: Select beans from reputable brands like Tank Coffee. These brands maintain consistency and quality.

Best Coffee Regions

Certain regions are famous for producing the best coffee beans. These include:

  • South America: Countries like Colombia and Brazil dominate coffee production. Colombian coffee is known for its balance and acidity.
  • Central America: Costa Rica and El Salvador provide beans with unique floral and fruity notes.
  • Africa: Ethiopian coffee stands out for its complex and vibrant flavour profiles.

Shopping Tips

When purchasing world-class coffee, follow these tips:

  • Specialty Stores: Opt for coffee from specialty stores and avoid generic supermarket brands.
  • Buy Whole Beans: Whole beans preserve flavour longer than pre-ground coffee.
  • Sample Packs: Try sample packs from various brands to discover your preferred flavour profiles.
  • Online Marketplaces: Websites like BBC Good Food provide reviews


Finding the best coffee in the world can be a delightful journey. With so many unique beans and brewing methods to explore, there’s always something new to discover.

Remember to trust your taste buds and enjoy the process of experimenting with different varieties. Whether you prefer the rich flavours of Jamaican Blue Mountain or the vibrant notes from South American regions, the perfect cup of coffee is out there waiting for you.

So grab your favourite brewing gear and start your coffee adventure today!

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