What Does Single Origin Coffee Mean?




Single Origin Coffee Whole Beans

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Have you ever walked into a coffee shop, browsed through the coffee menu and the word Single Origin pops up? If you are like us, you must have thought what does that even mean? Should i buy Single Origin Coffee?

We decided to dive in and find out.

Single Origin coffee is where the coffee bean is sourced from one single geographic region. The coffee can be from one single farm, or from farms in a specific region and/or country. With Single Origin you will know exactly where your coffee has come from, providing a deeper understanding and a higher quality bean.

latte art

Why has Single Origin Coffee Become Popular?

In recent years, Single Origin Coffee has been on the rise, and is still rising in popularity due to the rise and influence in Specialty Coffee cafes, and coffee retail stores across the world and main cities like London.

Many of these Specialty Coffee cafes and shops offer alternative brewing methods such as the Chemex and AeroPress brewing methods.

Read: Chemex Brewing Guide (what is a Chemex)

This has therefore opened up the opportunity for other coffees and beans to be offered and experimented with, without compromising the core espresso offer, these new coffees and beans have then migrated into the coffee industry, and has now brought Single Origin into mainstream vocabulary and grown in popularity. 

Due to the fast paced coffee industry, and the passion of today’s baristas, the industry is now prepared to experiment and innovate the coffee scene, and people are prepared to ignore convention and look further, outside of the box, and reinvent the coffee experience altogether.

“We are currently living in a coffee movement that is fascinated by increased transparency and innovative methods, it is no surprise that Single Origins are providing popular” – perfect daily grind.

What do the Different Terms Of Single Origin Mean?

Different terms you may be asking yourself? What we are referring to are the terms Single Estate and Single Farm. Heard of these terms before? Weather you have or you haven’t what do they all mean, and are they not the same thing as Single Origin?

Well Single Origin is actually a pretty small term with a wider definition. As mentioned in the first paragraph, Single Origin coffee is referred to as coffee beans that are sourced from one single geographic region. 

But this can be narrowed even further down, and that is where Single Estate and Single Farm comes into play.

Single Farm and Single Estate means that the coffee beans are sourced from one single farm or mill. You can even go a step further and find the coffee labels that tell the consumer the estate name or field the coffee bean was grown on. This is where you can find some of the best Specialty Coffee and Single Origin beans in the world.

One of the most important factors about Single Origin Coffee is its traceability, therefore, information on Single Estate and Single Farm is very important to have an extra edge on your competition.

Why do people buy single origin coffee?

man brewing coffee in coffee shop

Many passionate people in the coffee industry, as well as the consumers want to be educated, and many are looking for guidance to develop more skills and experiences with the industry. 

People now enjoy interpreting the complex taste and sensations that they can now experience from a good cup of coffee made with a Single Origin bean. These complex factors can only be achieved when using a Single Origin coffee bean, therefore, one of the main reasons why people buy Single Origin Coffee.

In today’s market, there are so many varieties of Single Origin coffee beans, that people are forever experimenting and trying new flavours from many different locations around the world, continuously wanting to buy the new thing that comes out, or for some, be the person that has the new thing to provide to coffee consumers around the world.

Most consumers however, are not so educated and have no interest in becoming educated with Single Origin, and Specialty Coffee in general, however, can be guided to better quality coffees that Single Origin is renowned for.

Where Can You Buy Single Origin Coffee?

pour over coffee and keep cup with espresso coffee inside
Good Life Coffee 
At a glance;
  • Amazing Arabica Coffee
  • Direct Trade and Handpicked
  • Free From Pesticides or Artificial Fertilisers
  • Bright & Beautifully Smooth Flavours
  • Rich Coffee Flavour
  • 100% Specialty Grade
  • Hand Roasted to Order
Product Description;

This Costa Rican medium roast from Finca La Pira, Costa Rica, Tarrazu is guaranteed to be one of the most delicious coffees you will try.

Smell these freshly medium roasted coffee beans which are 100% specialty grade arabica coffee.

Your great coffee experience will begin as soon as you open the bag and smell the aroma, and then brew to enjoy the delicate fruity flavour notes of ripe peach and mango. 

Appreciate a very well balanced clean cup and a lovely lingering aftertaste in this rare, single origin, great tasting coffee.

Roasted in small batches using traditional artisan methods, careful attention is put into developing the individual characteristics that this coffee requires to bring you its unique bold flavours, natural sweetness & exemplary flavour.

These beans are packaged to ensure optimal freshness in a resealable coffee bag with a one way value to enable the beans to degas while keeping air out.

These speciality grade 100% arabica coffee beans meet specialty coffee standards, fair trade coffee ethically sourced from Tarrazu, Costa Rica.

These awesome coffee beans are best sellers to many coffee lovers. Ordering these beans is the easiest way to get your coffee beans direct from the roaster, being delivered straight to your doorstep.

Enjoy these coffee beans with Espresso, French Press, Aeropress, Drip, Pour Over (Hario V60, Chemex, Kalita), iced & cold brew coffee.

Brew some Good Life Coffee & see how it tastes.

Check out at Amazon

Indonesia Sumatra Orangutan Coffee (Single Estate)
At a glance;
  • 100% Arabica, Single Origin, Single Estate Coffee
  • Ecologically Friendly Coffee 
  • Balanced, Medium Bodied Coffee
  • Chocolate and Cherry Top Notes
  • Hints of Date and Rose Hips
Product Description;

The Orangutan Coffee Project protects orangutans, the rainforest, and supports the local farmers and communities of Sumatra. 

Orangutan Coffee – a 100% Arabica, single origin, single estate coffee – is born from a mission to save the rapidly declining rainforest habitat of the Sumatran orang-utan. 

Tropical rainforests provide the special climate that Sumatra needs for its unique high-quality Arabica coffee to thrive. They’re also home to the critically endangered Sumatran orangutan – only 6000 of the native primates remain in the wild today. 

Both are under threat because of mass deforestation. Every hour, areas of tropical rainforest the size of 88 football pitches are cleared to make way for palm oil and other intensive forms of industrial agriculture. 

This destruction is threatening the existence of both orangutans and farmers alike. The Orangutan Coffee Project helps farmers who commit to operate ecologically friendly coffee plantations without clearing rainforests. 

For each kilogram of green coffee produced, the farmer receives a premium and a donation is made to the Sumatran Orangutan Conservation project and its activities. 

Cupping notes: Balanced, medium bodied coffee with chocolate and cherry top notes with hints of date and rose hips.

Check out at Amazon

Coffee Cruise Single Origin Coffee
At a glance;
  • Single Origin Coffee Beans
  • 100% Arabica from Peru
  • Medium roast
  • Tasting Notes: Almond, Caramel and Berry
  • Suitable for Brewing and for Coffee Machines
Product Description;

Coffee Cruise is a family-owned coffee roastery located in a small and unpolluted area of Lithuania near Vilkaviškis town. 

They are responsible for the whole roasting process starting with green coffee beans obtaining and finishing with packaging. 

According to the oldest traditions, Peruvian coffee is picked up by hands. This method ensures that only ripe highest quality berries are picked. 

After removing the top layer, berries are left to ferment naturally. After that, they are being washed and left to dry under the hot sun. Attentive care leads to rich and well kept taste of coffee with exceptionally low acidity.

The Peru Coffee Cruise range has unique tasting notes, including the light and delicate almond bitterness ending with a sweet note of chocolate, and Intense caramel sweetness with hints of nuts give this coffee an ideally balanced taste, there is also a slight sourness for a distinctive flavour.

This is why Coffee Cruise always guarantee the quality of coffee.

Check out at Amazon

How Can You Use Single Origin Coffee at Home?

coffee sitting on white magazine in a bed

So now you have got your own Single Origin coffee beans, how can you use these at home?

  • Filter Coffee

Everyone enjoys a quick filter coffee right? You probably have been using a coffee blend right? Well with single origin, you can now be more adventurous with your filter coffee. Single Origin beans are perfect for filter coffee if you are continuously wanting to explore the many flavours of Single Origin. 

However, if you are someone who likes their coffee to never change, and stay in its old reliable ways, then blend coffee will still be a great choice for you. If we do not have any Single Origin, we use Union Revelation Espresso Blend which is a great coffee blend you can find over on Amazon for filter coffee, however, you will not find the same complex flavours than Single Origin, and there are some blends that lack in quality, although Union Coffee is phenomenal.

  • Espresso Coffee

The Espresso is very similar to your filter coffee, however, an espresso blend is usually developed to override and balance flavours. Blend coffee is generally used more when drinking milk based coffee beverages as they provide this solid base flavour.

Single Origin still works great, especially if you use the correct coffee to milk ratio, however, much more preferred if you drink your coffee black at home.

Single Origin Brewing Tips

It is important to ensure when brewing with Single Origin coffee that the following factors are taken into consideration.

⇒ Fresh Coffee

⇒ Grind

⇒ Water

⇒ Coffee to Water Ratio

Fresh Coffee

To ensure you are brewing up quality coffee, you must start with using fresh coffee beans. Coffee is like all other organic produce and is perishable after a period of time. The sooner you use your single origin coffee beans, the better your specialty coffee will taste.

Your coffee will start to go stale generally a month after the roasting date, so ensure when buying your single origin coffee beans, you can see the roasting date on the packaging.


It is important to ensure your grind is always consistent, and the best way to do that is to grind your own beans just before you start a brew using a good quality burr grinder if possible.

Once you grind your own beans, the coffee particle will now release all its wonderfully aromos and oils.

But ensure you are only grinding what you need, now the coffee particle is exposed to oxygen, the freshness will decrease at a much more rapid pass, then that as a whole bean.


Quite often forgotten, water also needs to be of high quality. Did you know water makes up at least 98% of your entire coffee brew, therefore, can quickly change the true flavours of your single origin coffee beans.

Filtered water is best if possible, we sometimes use a brita filter which also works great, however, generally to get the best results, we would not recommend using water straight from your kitchen tap, into your kettle.

Try begin your brewing with water that is around 30 seconds to 1 minute off the boil to avoid scorching your coffee.

Coffee to Water Ratio

Depending on the type of Specialty coffee you are brewing up, you may need to adjust your coffee to water ratio.

It also comes down to personal preferences as if you are someone who likes a stronger coffee brew, you would want to try something like a 1:15 ratio.

The best way to get this is to measure it out, however, if you do not have any scales, then you can also use a Tablespoon which is about 6 grams of ground coffee. It may need a little bit of experimenting to get what is right for you, however an important tip to master.

What Countries Produce the Best Single Origin Beans?

Coffees that are not referred to as single origin are generally known as blends, which include more than one single origin coffee. 

Today’s coffee farmers, especially those that work within the Specialty and Single Origin Coffee market, take huge pride in the quality of the coffee that they are producing.

The Farmer cares about the end result in the cup and how that translates to the consumer, however, in order to produce such a high quality bean, there are only several countries in the world with the perfect conditions.

As we have discovered Single Origin coffee have their tastes influenced by a variety of different factors including social conditions, climatic conditions, altitude levels above sea level and so on. 

So although it is believed there are around 80 countries in the world to suite the needs of good quality coffee, let’s take a quick look at five countries that are known to produce some of the ‘best’ Single Origin beans in the world.

Colombian flag

Big players in the coffee industry it is believed Colombia supply’s 15% of the worlds coffee, producing some of the highest quality Arabica beans.

Although Colombia produces slightly different qualities, you can source some of the best Single Origin beans available in today’s Specialty Coffee market.

Check Out Colombian Single Origin Coffee on Amazon

Ethiopian pink houses

Ethiopia has a reputation of producing some of the best varieties of different coffee, and are especially renowned for the famous Harrar variety, producing spicy, fruity, wine like tasting beans.

If you go a little deeper and source Single Origin coffee beans from Ethiopia, then you will not be disappointed

Check Out Ethiopian Single Origin Coffee on Amazon

Costa Rica
Costa Rican native bird on branch

Costa Rica also carries a high reputation with its great tasting coffee. Their Single Origin beans and generally all other coffee are well rounded on all fronts.

Much of the coffee is grown on the countries volcanic soils which produces a rich walnut like tasting coffee, with a smooth and soft finish.

Coffees from Costa Rica are more often than not wet processed Arabicas.

Check Out Costa Rican Single Origin Coffee on Amazon

Guatemalan lady shopping in market

Guatemalan coffee has been recognized as one of the best types of coffee in the world, due to their coffee being grown in mountainous regions.

Guatemala can produce more intense tart like flavoured coffee which is very unique to this country, and depending on the course of their ever changing climate conditions, you just can’t get this anywhere else in the world.

Due to being exposed to frequent ocean winds, Guatemalan coffee can sometimes produce a light and bright flavour with slight acidic tones.

Check Out Guatemalan Single Origin Coffee on Amazon

palm trees in Jamaica

Jamaican coffee boasts its classic flavoured, and very expensive coffee, which has been described as an elite standard of coffee beans.

You will find Jamaican coffee generally has a rum like aroma, with unique smooth and mellow flavours.

Check Out Jamaican Single Origin Coffee on Amazon

What Does the Increase in Demand mean for Coffee Farmers?

Due to the increase in popularity, there is now a much higher demand for Single Origin beans across the world. So what does this mean for todays coffee farmers?

The Specialty Coffee market is booming, so much so that it is big enough to change the coffee farming game completely. 

More and more farmers are labelling themselves as Specialty Coffee farmers which is therefore, producing higher quality farmers in the industry.

Higher quality crops are being produced due to the high demand, and this therefore has an effect on farming methods.

Some farmers are now experimenting with their selection of cultivators and the control they have over the coffee berry growth stages. 

This also means farmers are now experimenting with the harvesting times, milling and processing techniques, which is continuously result in new varieties of Single Origin Beans being developed.

How Do You Know if your Coffee is Graded Single Origin?

So we know Single Origin coffee has led to an increase in quality, as well as resulted in a wide variety of Specialty Coffee available.

But how do we really know if the Single Origin coffee you are using is good? Does the word Single Origin always mean that you have a good quality coffee?

To answer these questions, we need to dive in and have a look at how Single Origin coffee is actually graded, the last thing you want to do is spend your hard earned money on a bean that may sell themselves as Specialty, but really is of poor quality. 

This is where you can count on industry evaluation systems that come into play, like Coffee Quality Institute of Q who adhere to the Specialty Coffee Association of America, or commonly known as the SCAA standards.

These standards evaluate at a producer and farm level, long before the consumer even gets their hands on it.

Coffee Review is also one of the world’s leading Specialty and Single Origin professionals, as they provide some of the world’s most widely read and influential coffee buying guides and roast reviews available, which is very valuable to the roasters and retailers when sourcing their Single Origin Coffee.  

These respected industry leading grading systems measure the quality of the coffee and do their best to quantify the coffee quality and remove potential subconscious biases. 

To grade the coffee, they generally use a blind cupping method and a 100 point review system.

Read: What is Specialty Coffee and the Processes of Making it 

While the criteria may differ between different systems around the world, they all follow the same structures where they all use the descriptive categories coffee professionals use on their grading and tasting scoresheets.

So if you are looking at buying your own Single Origin coffee, ensure you looking for these systems as well as a scoring of over 80 on a 100 point review. 

Invest some time in reading up on your chosen coffee and try to educate yourself to ensure what you are actually purchasing is the real deal.

Why Single Origin Coffee is More Expensive?

Specialty Coffee menu with prices

While a Single Origin will usually be sold at a higher price, baristas generally do not offer an explanation of the brews compelling and complex qualities (unless asked).

Single Origin beans are considered Specialty, and are hand picked from small farms in unique countries generally by the equator. Single Origin coffee will state the country, the region and the farm or processing centre on the bag you buy it in.

This type of coffee recognizes the value of the farms and the linkage between the coffees roots and the taste in the cup, and will go through intensive grading, which results in the best quality possible.

Because of the processes and careful creation of Single Origin beans, they generally come with a higher price tag, however, the old saying goes, you get what you pay for, right?

Ultimately it is up to the consumer as to how much time and money they will invest in Single Origin Coffee. Those who are willing to try new things and take themselves out of the generic same tasting coffee for years to come, Single Origin will be the answer.

There may be a slight adjustment for those coming from a more generic mass produced coffee to a Specialty Single Origin Coffee, however, you just can’t argue the unique flavours and quality that can only be produced by Single Origin beans, trust me its worth it.


So what’s next for you and your next coffee brew? Have you tried Single Origin Coffee before?

Understanding where our coffee comes from and the unique journey Single Origin beans make from farmer to cup is one way any coffee enthusiasts and caffeine addicts alike will get more out from their coffee.

When brewing your own Single Origin coffee it is easy to feel a little intimidated by the term single origin, factoring in all the complex flavours varying in geographic and micro climates, but by no means does Single Origin need to feel this way.

Once you know what kind of flavours you prefer, you can then work out what country of Origin is your favourite, and best suited to your taste and brewing needs, which hopefully this article has shared some light on.

Let your Single Origin adventure begin, start being drawn in and appreciate the hard work that farmers and roasters alike have put into Single Origin Coffee, to provide you with some of the best and most unique coffees from around the world.

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