A perfect cup of coffee does really exists! Wondering how you can make one? Factors listed in this guide will surely help you achieving that Barista – Tasting Coffee.
Selecting the Coffee Flavor You Like
You have to pick and stick with the coffee flavor/s you want in order to get a perfect cup of coffee. This is where all the factors listed below will primarily depend. Do you want a ‘Flat White’, or an ‘Americano’? Curious in trying ‘Cappuccino’? Not every coffee bean types and its roast blends perfectly with a cup of Mocha, and I don’t think Liberica coffee should be used for a Caramel Macchiato either. It is comparable on how you’re choosing a food and get its recipe. An incorrect combo of coffee bean and its roast type for your desired coffee flavor will just make you feel unsatisfied with your first sip.
These instances can give you some basic information which matches and which doesn’t:
If you like adding milk on your coffee because you like the creamy taste and the feeling of it, then choosing a medium to dark roast Arabica beans is the best choice. These types of coffee beans are perfect for lattes and cappuccino.
If you’re looking for something to kick start your day or maybe will keep you awake for 3-4 hours, Medium to Light Roast Robusta should give you that needed caffeine for an Espresso Shot or Americano.
Choosing a Type of Coffee Bean
Since you’ve now got your desired coffee flavor, the next thing you need to consider to get your perfect cup of coffee is to select a type of coffee bean. Why is it important? Coffee bean dictates the level of caffeine that your cup of coffee would have, its undertone, and generally – overall taste of your coffee. Here are the most common types of coffee beans:
Arabica: Being the 60% of the total coffee production in the world, Arabica is named to be the most common coffee type in the market. High quality Arabica beans have more body, rich texture and smooth. It is flavor-packed and less acidic makes it very pleasant to drink. Arabica approximately has 1.1% – 1.5 % caffeine or 400 ml per ounce. The flavor of Arabica diminishes when it is cold or combined with artificial flavors and creamer. It is best to be consumed hot and freshly made.
Robusta: Known to be stronger and has more bitter flavor. It contains double the amount of caffeine than the Arabica. Its name speaks for itself as it contains 2.5% more caffeine than any other type of coffee beans. It has a strong and distinct flavor that seems to be kicking every time you drink this coffee. Because of its super strong flavor and sometimes defined as sort of a ‘rubbery taste’ or ‘burnt’, Robusta is not the primary choice of the coffee drinkers. However, take note that high quality Robusta has hints of chocolatey taste! Which is perfect with cream and sugar while retaining its flavor. Preferred by people who like strong tasting coffee because of its high caffeine content which can surely make you awake.
Liberica: Among the three types of coffee, Liberica is the most low yield one, as it only grows in specific places. Because of this coffee’s rarity, Liberica producing countries still couldn’t meet the global market demands. Therefore having a cup of this coffee is surely an incomparable experience. Why? Because it has a unique lovely aroma, and has a full-bodied taste. Some people say it has an ‘Earthy’ flavor. Liberica beans can be easily identified because of its asymmetrical shape, and it’s larger compared to Arabica and Robusta.
An important thing to note is – you don’t have to stick with just one specific type of coffee bean. Usually, a bag of coffee beans is composed of a mix of these beans, which give a great combination which gives you the best their worlds
Picking Up The Roast Type
I’m pretty sure that you’ve noticed labels on coffee bean bags from your local supermarket that indicate about coffee’s roast types. Yes! It’s something like “Medium Roast” or “Dark Roast” or some other types. The coffee roast type is a vital factor when making your perfect cup of coffee. Because it determines coffee’s flavor and also has a factor of changes in acidity level.
Light Roast: Lightly roasted coffee is usually more acidic and has much caffeine content compared to other types of roast. Despite that, light roast has a more distinct natural flavor and does not taste that bitter. Some coffee experts describe its taste as ‘dry’ due to less heat exposure; therefore not much oil extracted during the roasting process.
Medium Roast: The well-balanced roasting and preferred by many; medium roasted coffee beans have fuller body, greater flavor, and a lot smoother and aromatic than light roast. As these beans spend longer time in the heat, it loses a little acidity and caffeine which makes it balanced and develop a more pronounced and intricate taste compared to dark roast.
Dark Roast: The longest roasting time among the rest, this type is considered to be less acidic and has less caffeine content than the medium roast. Due to its longer exposure to heat, dark roasted coffee beans develop more oil making it look shiny. It also loses its natural fruity coffee taste and ultimately it tastes more bitter.
Packaging the Bag of Coffee
Coffee beans react to whatever environment it is exposed to. They are so porous that they will absorb the smell of anything. You need to check the packaging of the coffee bean if it is properly sealed and if it is appropriate to the place where you will be keeping them. Here are the different types of coffee packaging and if they are ideal or not:
Vacuum sealed: It is not ideal to vacuum seal a roasted coffee bean. Carbon dioxide builds up when the beans are roasted which makes them “fresh”. Vacuum removes the air from the beans, and eventually loses its freshness.
One-way degassing valve: That tiny vent that you see on a coffee bean bag is actually not for customers’ to smell coffee’s aroma. It keeps the coffee bean fresh by letting the carbon dioxide in. While it keeps the oxygen and moisture out of the bag – which can make the beans go bad.
Zipper bag: This type packaging allows the consumer to use the necessary amount of coffee bean and seal the bag again. This will prolong the shelf life of the beans, you just have to make sure you open the bag once a day to ensure that there’s no moisture building up inside it.
Knowing Your Coffee’s Origin
Contrary to most people’s beliefs, not all coffee tastes the same and the place where it was grown has a great influence on the flavor. This means a raw Arabica Coffee from Columbia tastes different from an Arabica Coffee from the Philippines. This may be a minor thing, but still worth mentioning.
Countries all over the world boast their locally grown coffee beans and how they are different and better than the others. Taste differences can be of the following:
Freshness of the Coffee – the farther the place it was grown the longer it stayed in storage. As a result, the taste of the coffee changes overtime and the freshness that you are looking for may no longer be there.
Geological component differences – land’s different components affect coffee’s taste too! One great example is – a coffee from Africa has hints of wine and berry with a fruity scent, while coffee from Asia has more earthy and woody tones.
Checking the ‘Dates’
Some consumers think that the coffee beans do not expire, which is a common misconception. Coffee beans have the tendency to stale, and lose their freshness overtime. Keeping it exposed to air and unsealed makes it dull.
It is actually ideal to brew the coffee beans not later than 3 weeks after it was roasted. This is the perfect span of its freshness. Keeping it longer than that diminishes the taste of the coffee and eventually goes bad. Some coffee beans that are sold in the supermarket are no longer fresh as they were roasted weeks before they are packed, shipped, and sold to the market aisles. Check out your local coffee shops or the nearest coffee roasting houses for guaranteed fresh coffee beans.