5 Best Sumatran Mandheling Coffee Beans In 2022

If you’re a coffee lover,you may have heard sumatra mandheling is the best coffee (or one of the best), and you’re probably not sure why.

This single-origin coffee has become a favorite among coffee lovers all around the world.

These are some of the best Sumatra coffee brands with a rich flavor that comes in light roast, dark roast, and medium roast (like most coffees). Each variety has a unique taste because the Indonesian Island of Sumatra has a wet tropical climate.

So, whether you’re a diehard french press coffee lover or a simple drip coffee person, Sumatra coffee beans will make your cup of Joe one of the best it will ever be.

*This post may contain affiliate links. I’ll receive a commission if you purchase anything using my link.

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5 best sumatra coffee brands on blue background.  Image of steaming coffee beans coming out of a coffee cup.

What kind of coffee is Sumatra?

Sumatra mandheling comes from the 6th largest island in the world and is renowned for its full-bodied, earthy flavor and low acidity. As its name suggests, it comes from Sumatra, an island located in the westernmost reaches of Indonesia. Much of Indonesian coffee comes from northern Sumatra.

Why Is Sumatra coffee so unique?

Northern Sumatra is mountainous. The volcanic soil, high altitudes, and high elevations of its mountains enriches the region’s soil with many nutrients, which makes the growing conditions optimal for coffee plants. 

Small landholders in this rugged region of Sumatra grow the coffee plants. Most of these landholders have obtained Fair Trade, Organic, Rain Forest, and other environmentally friendly certifications to meet the standards of organic so that they can continue their coffee production farms for generations to come.

The soil conditions in which Sumatran coffee plants grow partially explain why these beans are low in acidity. Though, it’s likely also a result of the wet hulling process North Sumatran farmers use to produce the coffee beans.

volcanic mountains of indonesia

How is Sumatra coffee made?

So, how does Sumatran coffee get its bold, full-bodied flavor? Farmers can’t use the traditional processing method in North Sumatra because of the unique climate.

Northern Sumatra is hot and wet. The region receives an average of about 200 inches of rain per year. This makes it impossible for farmers to dry out the coffee beans the traditional way, so they’ve devised a different method – wet hulling.

raw sumatra coffee beans

The coffee cherries are put in a hand-crank machine after they have been picked. This machine removes the fruit and skin — the outermost layers of the cherries. The farmers then place the extracted green beans in bags and leave them to ferment. A day or two later, they remove the beans from their bags and wash them to remove the mucilage — the gooey layer between the hull, skin, and fruit.

The beans would usually be left for weeks to dry, but since northern Sumatra is so wet, the farmers have to remove the parchment by hand; hence the name wet hulling. Without the hull, the beans dry out much quicker. And “once they reach about 12 % moisture, the coffee beans are ready for export” (Sasha Pavlovich, coffeehow.co).

What does Sumatra coffee beans taste like?

This unique process gives Sumatran coffee beans their distinct, full-bodied, earthy flavors.

If you prefer a high-quality, fine-tasting coffee low in acidity, then Sumatran coffee beans are a good choice.

woman drinking sumatran coffee outside with laptop to the left

What are the 5 best Sumatra coffee beans?

There are several brands of Sumatran coffee beans and ground coffee on the market, but here are the five best brands that will never disappoint. Their flavor, freshness, roast quality, and price make these Sumatran coffee beans a top choice for consumers.

1.Volcanica Coffee Sumatra Mandheling Coffee

These Sumatran beans are low in acidity, and they are full-bodied in flavor; they carry hints of chocolate, spice, and brown sugar. These beans are medium-roasted, certified Fair Trade, Rainforest Alliance, and shade-grown. 

The only downside to Volcanica is that it’s slightly expensive.

2.Volcanica Sumatran Gayo Coffee

Volcanica’s Gayo coffee is made via the wet-hulling process. It is medium-roasted and is lighter than most other Sumatran coffees. Yet, this Sumatran coffee is distinct in flavor with notes of caramel, peach, wisteria, and chocolate.

3. Organic Sumatra Swiss Water Half Caf Coffee

This brand of Sumatra coffee proves that coffee can be healthy. “It is USDA Organic, Fair Trade, Rainforest Alliance, and Kosher Certified,” (Sasha Pavlovich). 

As its name suggests, the Organic Sumatra Swiss Water Half Caf coffee has less caffeine than the other Sumatran brews, making it more of a decaf than a regular coffee. Yet, it is bold and rich in flavor with notes of baker’s chocolate. That’s because these plants are grown in full shade.

4. Cooper’s Cask Sumatra Dark Roast

If you enjoy a dark roast that’s earthy and spicy, one that contains a unique combination of cedar, cherry, and tobacco flavors, then this brew is for you. The Cooper’s Cask Sumatra Dark Roast beans are certified Fair Trade and Organic.

The only drawback; these beans are oily, which makes it difficult to use them for other brewing methods. They are also pricey.

single origin coffee whole bean ground

5. AmazonFresh Organic Fair Trade Sumatra

You can even get pre-ground Sumatran coffee from Amazon (hence its name AmazonFresh). The pre-ground option is ideal if you don’t have a coffee grinder or prefer not to grind your coffee. It is also reasonably priced.

This dark roast, low-acidic coffee is certified both Organic and Fair Trade. It is also full-bodied in flavor, carrying strong smoky and chocolate notes.

AmazonFresh Sumatra Dark Roast

Get Sumatra dark roast ground coffee on Amazon.

blue coffee bag with sumatra dark roast inside a green circle

A takeaway for coffee drinkers of all kinds

These are just five of several brands of best Sumatran coffee beans on the market. But their roast quality, flavor, and freshness make these beans the best of the best.

The local farmers value have taken the higher moisture content of their whole bean coffee and transformed it into a great coffee with an earthy taste that’s unmatched.

Though they are slightly expensive, these brands of Sumatran coffee beans are well worth the investment, if only for a treat.

About the Author

Deanna Proach is a freelance writer and editor who lives in northern British Columbia, Canada. She is passionate about fitness, gardening, and personal development, though she has recently decided not to constrain herself to any niche. You can learn more about Deanna at www.deannaproachwriter.com

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