You must have heard the word “Java” used in a lot of contexts. After a while, you figured out that it’s another name for most people’s go-to morning beverage. But why is it called this way? What’s the connection between Java and coffee?
Surely, there are many names by which you may refer to coffee or coffee-based beverage. Like espresso, latte, cappuccino, brew or other.
But Where did Java Come From?
It seems like “coffee” got the name thanks to the area where its beans were used for the first time in the sixth or ninth century (differences are depending on the author ). The name of the region was Kaffa Province, it was an area in ancient Abyssinia and name Kaffa became a regular term that, over time, has developed into “coffee”.
What we surely know is that the first information we have on coffee use is from the 15th century and it comes from the Sufi Monasteries in Yemen. This beverage was banned by religious leaders in Mecca and Cairo, but it spread to India, Turkey, and Northern Africa anyway, later continuing to Europe and Balkans, Asia and America.
“Java” comes from the Island that carries the same name. In the seventeenth century, the Dutch brought the brew to Southeast Asia. Actually, they had brought trees to some places, like Bali, and coffee is still grown there and it’s a source of income. Besides Bali, the coffee was also brought to Java where it got it’s an interesting name.
The exact details of the development and spreading of the word “Java” as a synonym for the brew are unknown, but it’s possible that the Dutch themselves could have been the first to use the name as a reference to single-origin coffee much like “Brazil”, “Kenya” and other single-origins. Today, it refers to the drink itself, regardless of the origin which is possibly the consequence of the trade that caused the term to be used widely.
Let’s Find Out More About Java
It’s an island located in Indonesia which contains four provinces. It’s the island on which most people live and contains more than fifty percent of the Indonesian population. The interesting fact is that Java may have also got its name after a plant.
The interesting part is that the Dutch had ruled the island of Java (and the whole Indonesia) from the seventeenth to the twentieth century. They saw how the gains could be made through some aspects of the Indonesian industry, but they exploited coffee the most. Thanks to the forced labor, fertile grounds and the location of the Java, by the end of the nineteenth century it had become the world’s leading producer of a well-known single-origin coffee – Arabica.
Plantations had suffered a hard blow at the end of the century when the plague attacked, and as we mentioned earlier, most of the plantations were ruined and only a few of them left while Dutch gave chance to the Robusta which wasn’t of the same quality, but it could endure the disease.
Java has been freed of Dutch in the middle of the twentieth century and it progressed fastest in Indonesia. The lower class of Java usually works in the field of agriculture and most of those people work on something related to coffee. Java is becoming more modern and it takes great leaps forward, but the “Joe” is one of the main reasons for its development. The electricity, railways and many other features were improved and built thanks to and because of coffee – for example, for its transportation from the places of production.
These days, Java is still a fertile ground for coffee and similar plants. Even today, most of Java’s arabica production’s source is based on “Dutch” grounds. At the end of the 19th century, many arabica coffee plants were substituted with liberica and robusta because arabica couldn’t survive leaf rust, unlike robusta or liberica.
The problem was that arabica had many more characteristics that were wanted by bean producers than the two previously mentioned species did. Having to grown robusta and liberica lead to the production of coffee that was of lower quality than arabica would have been, which meant that the island had to say goodbye to the specialty-grade coffee.
Some of the arabicas have managed to survive and produce good coffee to this day. This coffee is classified as a specialty-grade coffee that found its purpose in two different ways. The first one is being half of a Mocha-Java blend and the other is “monsooning”. It’s a process when coffee is old three years and as a result, the drink has a less acidic taste.
Brazil and Colombia are well-known countries because of their coffee production. Java is the fourth-largest producer after the two mentioned countries and Vietnam.Java, as we all had come to know, has many nicknames.
What is some other coffee play on words?
Another curious name that coffee had acquired over the years is a cup of Joe. Let’s find out where this term came from. There isn’t one true answer to this question, but there are a few ideas.
There is one theory that suggests that US soldiers that were participating in World War I gave that name to instant coffee. That instant coffee was referred to as “cup of George” and over the time “Geo” had converted to the “Joe”.
Another possibility was that the name came from the military manual that included a “cup of jamoke” which was a combination of names of coffees java and mocha.
As you know, coffee is a beverage that is popular among many people. It’s also possible that “cup of joe” originated from the fact that java was the drink of the regular people, the common Joe.
After so many wordplays, many other questions come to mind. Do espresso synonyms exist? Espresso nicknames? What other beverages have as many synonyms? Are there more synonyms for coffee?
Many people call espresso “expresso” and “hippie speedball” to refer to the fact that its caffeine level will affect your alertness.
And there are, in fact, more names for our favorite beverage. Like Jamocha or Cuppa.
Jamocha has been already explained to some extent. It’s the combination of the words Java and Mocha and it’s known to be a strong beverage. Cuppa is a term that developed from the British pronunciation of the words “cup of”. Another funny name that follows this brew is Jitter Juice. It’s fairly known that caffeine, when consumed in high amounts, can have a certain effect on people.
This same effect can be seen in some people that didn’t drink a lot of beverage, but have an allergic reaction. They start sweating, trembling and getting jitters. This is often accompanied by rapid heartbeat, brain fog, nausea, and more symptoms.
FAQs: Frequently asked questions
Is drinking coffee healthy?
As you may know, Java beverage is followed by many myths. Some of those are that coffee is bad for your health. While it’s true that over-consumption can be unhealthy, it’s nothing new – almost everything can be bad for you if you consume it too much. On the other hand, health benefits that cuppa joe can provide are numerous – from boosting your alertness to preventing neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson’s and Multiple Sclerosis.
People that have caffeine intolerance can experience negative effects, but there is possible solutions for them: decaf. While decaf isn’t totally void of caffeine, it’s much less likely that you would experience unwanted effects like jitters or trembling when drinking decaf than regular, just because you drink a few times less caffeine.
Some of the additional health benefits of the coffee include: lowering the pain after workouts, having additional nutrients, playing a role in preventing type 2 diabetes, Alzheimer’s and dementia.
Why is coffee called mud?
Mud is a company that is based in New York. They sell their product out of the van “Mudtruck”. Their philosophy is that they are anti-establishment. The company started as a husband and wife business. Their objective is to be authentic and keep true to their neighborhood. The beverage got the name because of this company, but the company name was inspired by the husband’s grandmother, who used the term “mud” for her cuppa joe.
It’s no wonder that the beverage that’s so popular and for so long has a rich history. It’s also natural to wonder about it, but paradoxically, it’s very easy to take it for granted because it’s such a frequent part of our routines. People around the world enjoy its taste and it’s health benefits are numerous.
While previously it’s been thought that coffee is bad for you, recent research indicates that cuppa joe can do wonders for your immune system. Java may not be the only name for one of the world’s most favorite beverages, but it’s definitely only one that provides this type of health benefits while being so tasty!