I'm starting this thread because although I like the taste and mouthfeel of good Robusta, I don't physically tolerate it well. Many people have written about unpleasant tastes of rubber in some Robustas. There is none of that in a high quality version and this thread isn't intended to cover that issue.
I'm a one case study, so I'm interested in seeing if others have a similar response. Maybe someone reading this will know more about plant chemistry to help explain this. Here's what I just posted in the thread, Saka Caffè in the States .
drgary wrote:...I did finally try the 20% Robusta Gran Bar compared to the 100% Arabica Top Selection. I somewhat prefer the taste of the Gran Bar -- "somewhat" because I like Top Selection a lot. Unfortunately even a small amount of Robusta affects me adversely. It feels different than drinking more caffeine. I did a bit of online research and read that there are several additional stimulants in coffee in case one of those is getting to me. There may be something else in Robusta that I react to and first discovered this when trying Dutch Brothers coffee on a 2014 road trip. Dutch Brothers has lots of Robusta in it.
I pulled a 10 gm single of Gran Bar and enjoyed the additional anisette flavor over the Top Selection and it was slightly more creamy and thick. Then I felt too cranked up for the rest of the day, feeling differently than if I had had 3 doubles of Arabica. I tried a 8 gm single of 1/2 Gran Bar and 1/2 Top Selection and had a mild headache for hours. That's too bad. A good Robusta like the one used by Saka has very nice flavor and improves crema. I'll start another thread and will link it here to avoid derailing this thread. The Top Selection is still a favorite in my rotation.
I'll add that I've had a similar uncomfortable response when trying Lavazza Qualita Rossa, which has 70% Robusta.
I have read that caffeine in coffee is an insect repellant. Do other chemicals in Robusta have a similar effect that could be toxic to insects and feel unpleasant for some people? My guess is that genetic differences in people may account for difficulty tolerating foods that others enjoy without adverse effects.
A few years ago I posted about my response and another longtime member reported a similar reaction that included black tea, which I tolerate well.
Labeling this an allergy may not explain it, since allergy testing differs in traditional and alternative medical approaches. My physician tested me awhile back for allergy to coffee and didn't find any.redbone wrote:Same experience here. I can tolerate the mild warmth I feel with Arabica coffee but not the overwhelming feeling of edgeness and flush Robusta results in. Same thing with heavier brewed black tea.
I'm looking forward to your responses.
FYI, I'm a psychologist, not a physician.