Brazilian

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Santos Coffee from Brazil and Oaxaca Coffee from Mexico all originate from the Bourbon coffee tree, which produces a superb, mild coffee bean for the first four years of its productive life and then an enormous volume of standard Arabica coffee, which is useful for bulk or instant coffee, but lacking the essential characteristics of a self-drinker.

There are many coffee trees all over the south and central highlands of Brazil. The south of Brazil occasionally has frost scares, sometimes genuine and sometimes, so the cynics claim, to boost the prices.

The best Brazilian Coffee comes from the Santos region inland from Sao Paulo. Santos coffee beans are quite small, and medium roast they are very mild, with a medium body, good aroma and an excellent coffee flavour, but without the delicious hint of coffee acidity of Costa Rica.

High roast pure Brazil is beautifully black, slightly harsh, and almost brittle, without the flexibility that the other high roast Centrals have because of their sweetness. Pure Brazil coffees blend very well with Costa Rican and Colombian coffees for a proper after dinner coffee, or is nicely smoothed by a mellow Indonesian high roast.

The other noteworthy coffee from Brazil is "Rio", which has a harsh, metallic taste. Rio has always been a popular coffee with Brazilians - the mild Santos was for export only - but is now exported for use in high roast "Latin Blends" or "Greek Coffee", giving them a hint of steel. Rio is functional and not a coffee for romantics.