Kape Barako

Kape Barako is a varietal coffee from the Cavite province of the Philippines. It’s made from the rare species Coffea liberica, which accounts for less than 1% of commercially grown coffee.

Kape Barako - Philippines - Coffee - QiRanger

What is Barako?

Barako, a Filipino Term for a male stud, has become synonymous with this dark, full bodied coffee. The first Barako trees were planted in Brazil in the 1800s, and later in many countries. After a ravenous infection spread across the Philippines, the entire species was almost wiped out. Today, the coffee has seen a comeback, especially in Southeast Asian countries where the beans flourish.

Kape Barako - Philippines - Coffee - QiRanger


Kape Barako is typically hand dripped or made with a French Press. Some even make espresso out of the beans. For those preferring a little sweetness to their Barako, I recommend using honey or brown sugar over the white stuff.


Serving up this coffee after making a hand drip, the first thing I noticed was its pungent aroma. While many beans have a fruity smell, this does not. You can tell that the liberica beans came from volcanic lands thanks to their earthy waft. As expected, the brew was extremely dark and raising the mug to my lips found its bold taste refreshing. This coffee isn’t for everyone. Only those that enjoy the powerful taste of beans will savor the nectar as it passes their lips.

Kape Barako - Philippines - Coffee - QiRanger - Philippine Coffee Board

If you’d like to learn more about Kape Barako and Filipino coffee, visit the Phippine Coffee Board. However, what I would like to know, is when you drink coffee, what kind of roast do you like? Mild, Medium, Bold, or Extra Bold? Please leave your comment in the section below.

  • ColinS

    The synonyms for barako are pretty funny (at least in Google Translate). Thank you for the link to the Philippine Coffee Board! I had no idea there are four varieties of (commercially viable) coffee, interesting! I’d like to get my hands on some Barako, so I probably need to find a Philippine-centric market.

    As for what I like to drink when I have a choice? I tend toward heavier-bodied SE Asian or Central and South American arabicas, medium roast. It’s not easy to find a real medium roast though since the coffeehouse standard (Starbucks) is so dark. On one hand, I like the flavor of a dark roast, but I find that there’s little or no character from origin to origin, it just tastes dark, so it seems like great beans deserve a much lighter roast. It also depends on whether I want to put milk in it. The sweeter, more delicate beans with a lighter roast are great without milk.

    • Steve

      I think you’ll like it. I have another Filipino coffee video coming out in a few weeks. I’m really looking forward to that one! Yeah, I’m sure it might be a little harder to find in your specific area, but who knows, perhaps you can have it sent.

      I’m glad you mentioned the SEA blends. Those are also my favorite. I think you’d enjoy this one.

      • ColinS

        Great, I look forward to it!

  • myra

    Hi Steve! I noticed that you feature Philippines a lot in your blog. What made you like Philippines? ^^,

    • Steve

      I’ve always enjoyed traveling around SEA. My uncle served there in WWII on Corrigedor and Bataan. My wife is also Filipina.

  • http://www.silcacoffee.com/ Mike

    Steve, great that you enjoy our Philippine Barako Coffee. How did you discover it? Wonderful to see more people appreciating Philippine Coffee. I wanted to share with you my barako coffee, Kick-Start. http://www.mykickstartcoffee.com/. I have a coffee farm in Cavite with Barako and a coffee roasting company in the Philippines called Silca Coffee Roasting Co. Happy to share additional info on Philippine coffee.

    • qiranger

      I love the coffee. Since my wife is a Filipina, I get to enjoy Filipino food all the time. On one of our trips she mentioned the coffee and that I should try it. However, on our trips to the Philippines, I jut never got around to trying it. During my trip to the Yesosu Expo, we stopped off at the Philippines Pavilions and they had some coffee samples and I decided to pick it up.

  • Trevor Steele

    Hi ya, I am looking for Kapeng Barako coffee beans to sell in my shop and where i could get a good supply as i believe it will sell well in my area as there are alot of coffee drinkers. I am in South Australia Adelaide Suburb

    • Mgb_19565

      Hello Trevor… I am a supplier of kapeng barako…You can send me an email @ mgb_19565@yahoo.com. You can choose between grinded and beans.