Cuban Coffee Origins
Cuba is famed for its vibrant and energetic culture, a product of the many external influences over the island during the course of its history. Over the centuries, settlers from around the globe brought with them varying influences including different languages, societal values and customs. Among them, was the introduction of the coffee plant in 1748, a moment that would change the landscape of Cuba for years to come.
The introduction of the humble coffee plant had a huge impact following its introduction when farmers fleeing the Haitian revolution used the plant to pave the way for their new future in Cuba. When Haitians arrived on the island in the 1790s, much of the landscape was still covered in dense forest which just so happened to be ideal conditions for growing coffee. The occupying Spanish were selling off the land for affordable prices which made it an appealing industry to enter for those new to the island, especially as the Haitians were somewhat experts in coffee bean farming.
This was the beginning of world renowned Cuban coffee as we know it today. Soon there were many coffee plantations across the mountainous regions of the island where high altitude gave way to good levels of humidity, perfect, fresh climate levels of sun and shade and undisturbed soil under the sprawling canopies of the mountainous forests – conditions the coffee beans we use in our Cuban capsules for espresso still enjoy today.
Like the island itself, Cuban coffee has had a tumultuous time throughout history. Up until the Cuban revolution coffee was one of the country’s largest exports, however this was to change when the coffee industry was nationalized. Production levels declined and by the time of the Great Recession coffee exports had dropped to insignificant levels.
Further historical events led to an even greater fall in production; the trade embargo enforced by the US in 1962 saw exports to the US completely stop, followed by the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 saw production halt further.
Thankfully, there has been a recent resurgence in Cuban coffee production and popularity has grown across the world from Holland to Japan, which is great news for availability and our Cuban capsules for espresso. It means we have a wide selection of cuban farmers from whom we can source our Arabica and can select the finest beans for that famous deep, intensely velvet flavor. There are many names for this slice of Cuban culture, café Cubano the most celebrated but it also goes by the name of Cafecito, Cuban pull and Cuban shot.
Cuban Coffee Today
There are many coffee shops and bars spread across the island, from those nestled in the streets of Havana to the tranquil waterfronts of the white sand beaches. The love of coffee in Cuba is such that coffee is included in Cubans’ weekly rations and the culture of enjoying a coffee, or Café Cubano, is fundamental to Cuban society. The traditional way in which Cuban’s enjoy coffee is popular across the globe and has become a staple on coffee shop menus from Havana to Paris.
To be classed as Cuban coffee the beans must be of 100% Arabica origin and therefore this is the only variety Cuban farmers are allowed to grow. The Arabica bean complete with balanced aromas, the perfect level of acidity and low levels of bitterness, is the ideal base for espresso-based coffees. The growing conditions of the Cuban landscape develops the flavors and aromas inherent in the Arabica bean making it a great choice for one of Cuba’s most loved staples, the Café Cubano.
The Café Cubano is espresso that is prepared in a distinctively special way that makes it ideal for the strong, one shot hit. Traditionally Cuban’s use rich, natural brown sugar to sweeten the coffee by whipping the strongest drops of espresso with some sugar which creates a sweeter taste. This method of preparation also makes it a great option for those who prefer their cup of joe with milk and a host of options made with Café Cubano have become popular. Café con leche is served as a shot of this beautiful espresso alongside some frothy milk or a Cortadito will come to you as a sweetened espresso shot topped with some steamed milk. Cuban coffee has once again resurged in popularity the world over for those who enjoy a rich and intense base with sweet aromas.
There is a distinctive flavor to Cuban coffee, and our Cuban capsules are true to the authentic taste that café Cubano has become known for. The Arabica beans are not as strong as their Robusta bean cousins, but the Cuban variety is perhaps the strongest of the Arabica available. This sets the base for the rich, dark chocolate notes that follow with undertones of dark berries.
The bitterness of the espresso is balanced with the natural sweet aromas from the dark chocolate and berry flavors, but to really get an authentic café Cubano experience, why not try it with some natural sugar to really bring out the flavor?
We recommend whisking some sugar with a drop of the espresso from the pod before lengthening. Alternatively try adding some milk of your choice, slightly foamed which will also deliver that sweet finish. You will notice that the crema from this powerful blend is perfect, it is dark and rich in colour and thick but not too foamy. This is where pods really come into their own as they deliver this vital element of café Cubano every time.
Cuban Coffee from a Capsule
As coffee pod machines grew in popularity, so too did the range and variety of coffee available in pod form. We have carefully designed a pod that is Nespresso compatible and has unique features that make it an ideal choice for your machine, such as the airtight “EVO” seal and “EXTRA CREMA” tamp dome technology that delivers the perfect crema finish. Our pods preserve the great blend of Cuban coffee beans that have been carefully selected from specialist farmers for the tasting notes and aromas it provides. We have developed a carefully controlled process, from selecting beans to packaging of the pods, the whole supply chain is monitored each step of the way to ensure that the perfect café Cubano is delivered in the comfort of your own home.
Whilst the choice of bean is of great importance, so too is the production process. There are a variety of roasting methods that have been developed and it is of utmost importance that the correct roasting process is chosen to ensure the beans deliver the flavor they have been selected for.
The beans have to be exposed to the correct conditions; heat temperature, roasting time and intensity are all important factors.
The grinding process is also imperative, the roasted beans have to be ground to the perfect consistency to ensure the flavors will be released when the brewing begins.
The transportation, packaging process and storage of our beans is carefully controlled to ensure that there is no cross contamination so you can have the confidence that you are buying an authentic café Cubano experience. Our Cuban capsules for espresso are true to their origin and will allow you to enjoy the silky smooth espresso however you choose.
Our Cuban Capsules
Our entire range of Nespresso compatible capsules, including our Cuban coffee pods, are available in a standard sleeve of 10 pods. The pack is a great option for a versatile espresso to have on hand, you can enjoy short and black for a faithful hit or add milk of your choice to bring out underlying sweetness beneath the subtle bitter overtones.
The Cuban capsules for espresso are also available at great value in packs of 100 so you will never run out of this staple, as well as being included in the Country Series packs, Country Sampler packs and the Espresso Variety Pack.
We are proud of the taste experience our Cuban capsules for espresso deliver and have made sure that the espresso these little pods carry will meet your expectations. Nespresso machine compatible, it is now possible for you to enjoy a little slice of Cuban life from the comfort of your own home at an affordable price. Our Cuban capsules for espresso are the perfect addition to your coffee rotation and can be enjoyed however you choose.
For an espresso blend that is as steeped in flavor and taste as it is is in history and culture, make our Cuban coffee capsules your go to for that luxuriously rich espresso a Cuban would be proud of.
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