Coffee Glossary : R

Are you not familiar with a term used in one of our articles or reviews? Our Coffee Glossary defines hundreds of common and not-so-common words in the coffee lexicon. Click any letter below to view a list of coffee terms and definitions beginning with that letter.

Regular Roast, American Roast.  Coffee roasted to traditional American taste: medium brown.

Richness.  A satisfying fullness in flavor, body, or acidity.

Rio.  A class of dry-processed coffees from Brazil with a characteristic medicinal, iodine-like flavor deriving from invasion of a micro-organism during drying. The term Rioy or Rio-y has come to be applied to any coffee with similar taste characteristics. The Rio taste is considered a rank defect by North American buyers, but is sought after by some buyers from Balkan and Middle-Eastern countries.

Robusta, Coffea Canephora.  Currently the only significant competitor among cultivated coffee species to Coffea arabica. Robusta produces about 30% of the world’s coffee. It is a lower-growing, higher-bearing tree that produces full-bodied but bland coffee of inferior cup quality and higher caffeine content than Coffea arabica. It is used as a basis for blends of instant coffee, and for less expensive blends of preground commercial coffee. It is not a factor in the specialty coffee trade except as a body-enhancing component in some Italian-style espresso blends. See also Coffea Arabica.

Adapted from Coffee: A Guide to Buying, Brewing & Enjoying; Espresso: Ultimate Coffee; and Home Coffee Roasting: Romance & Revival. St. Martin's Press.

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