The difference between single-origin & coffee blends

single-origin coffee beans
As with wine, coffee preferences depend on your palette. What do you enjoy the most? When you reach for a dessert, do you always go for chocolate? Or maybe you choose something fruity?

Understanding the difference between roast levels as well as single-origin coffee versus coffee blends can help you determine what would be the best for you.

What is single-origin coffee?

Single-origin coffee means that the beans come from a single estate, region, producer, or a special separated coffee lot (micro-lot) that has a specific process or unique flavors. With single-origin coffee, producers can plant specific selective bred coffee plants, monitor their growth with precision, and make alterations in the process to ensure the perfect taste. There has been an increase interest in single-origin coffees and is the purest form to experience coffee. Each region and farm showcases different notes and each producer’s lots can differ slightly based on altitude, variety, and process.

Here at Gento, our coffees are named after the producer so you know which community, region, and farm you are buying from.

Single-origin coffees that have unique characteristics are usually presented as a light or medium roast to showcase and highlight those unique flavors. Light roast coffee flavors are more acidic and typically may highlight tasting notes originated from the process or terroir of the coffee. This does not mean a single-origin coffee can’t be offered as a dark roast. In many cases it is, it just means that the more special the lot, the best way to highlight those notes are with lighter roasts. Some notes you may taste in these special lots:

  • Panela
  • Sugarcane
  • Honey
  • Bakers chocolate
  • Red Berry (raspberry, grape, black cherry)
  • Citrus (tangerine, orange)
  • Stone fruit (plum, peach)
  • Jasmine
  • Orange Blossom
  • Camellia sinensis 

What are coffee blends?

Coffee blends include different beans from different producers and regions to create a flavor profile with balance and harmony. Blends are a craft and science controlled by the roastmaster. The key to blends is in ensuring flavor consistency when mixing and roasting beans. These blends tend to be medium or dark roast coffees and have a balanced and smooth flavor, with heavier bodies.

Flavor notes for blends favor these notes:


  • Chocolate
  • Molasses
  • Fudge
  • Caramel


  • Hazelnut
  • Cashew
  • Almond


  • Spices (cinnamon, nutmeg)
  • Cacao
  • Toffee

Which one is right for you, is completely dependent on your flavor profile preferences!

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