A lot of terms are thrown out in the coffee world. But this has to be one of the simplest. When asking what is single-origin coffee the answer is in the name. At a very basic level, it means the coffee all comes from one place. But that can mean a couple of different things. Depending on the place where you get the beans from it can mean all the coffee comes from the same country.

Coffee that is single origin in this manner can be a blend of coffees from around that country. Or it could be all from the same place. there is no way to tell unless your coffee has more information on the bag.

It can also mean all of the beans come from the same province within the country. Further focusing on the unique nature of the tasting notes.

Coffee from the same area within a country, or the same type of coffee can be a blend of several farms’ stocks. Again not a bad thing but something you should be aware of. Usually, the farms form a co-op and work together. Very frequently the farms are all from the same general area of the country so they have similar growing conditions.

And on the final level, it could mean that all the coffee comes from the same estate or farm. On this level, any unique notes will be special to the very hyper-local area that the beans were grown in. You really get a feeling for the terroir, the complete natural environment in which a particular wine is produced, including factors such as the soil, topography, and climate.

All of these are interesting facets of why your coffee tastes the way it does. But none of them is any better than any other. The more local a bean is sourced from the more confidence the seller has that the bean can stand on its own, flavor-wise.