15 surprising coffee facts you probably never knew…

Most of us coffee lovers know the basics like the coffee bean is a seed and that the most popular and widespread varieties are Arabica and Robusta, but we like to surprise you here at Smokin’ Bean.

Here are some coffee facts you possibly didn’t know about your favourite pick-me-up…

1. The chemical name for caffeine is Trimethylxanthine (we can’t pronounce it either).

2. Coffee is grown in an area call the ‘Bean Belt’. This is around the equator, between the Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn.

3. The most expensive coffee in the world is Black Ivory coffee. Made in Thailand, this coffee is prepared by elephants that consume the Arabica coffee beans and process them during digestion. Their stomach acid breaks down the bean proteins and provides a characteristic robust flavour to the drink. Sounds gross but sells for about $50 a cup.

4. The largest coffee shop in the world is the Al Masaa Café in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. It has 1,050 seats!

5. Decaf coffee isn’t strictly caffeine free. An eight-ounce brewed cup of decaf coffee actually contains 2 to 12 milligrams of caffeine. In comparison, a regular cup of coffee is between 95 to 200 milligrams.

coffee chemical composition

6. After caffeine is removed from coffee beans, it isn’t discarded. It is refined and sold on to Energy Drink manufacturers and pharmaceutical companies.

7. The first machine for making espresso was built and patented in 1884 by Angelo Moriondo of Turin, Italy.

8. An improved design was patented on April 28, 1903, by Luigi Bezzera.

9. The first ever webcam was actually used to watched coffee. In 1991, researchers at the University of Cambridge set up a camera feeding a live picture of a coffee machine in the ‘Trojan Room’ so employees could see whether the pot was full.

10. In Italy, it’s unusual to drink a cappuccino after 11am.

11. There are more ways to enjoy coffee that you first thought… Cascara is a caffeinated fruit ‘tea’ made from the fruit of the coffee cherry.

12. In the 17th Century women were forbidden to drink coffee in public.

13. George Washington (no, not the American President) invented instant coffee in 1906 – he was an English chemist.

14. Coffea Charrieriana from Cameroon is the only naturally decaffeinated coffee in the world.

15. A plain cup of brewed coffee has only around 5 calories.

Cup on machine

Be honest, how many of these coffee facts did you already know?


By Sara Lindsay

Smokin’ Bean Digital Manager