Understanding Coffee Bean Types, Flavors & Characteristics
Learn what roasters & coffee companies are really saying
It can be daunting to understand coffee bean types, flavors & characteristics enough to go to a coffee shop or super market. Then look up at that large wall of coffee bags and select one. Which one should you choose? Why are you choosing it? What do these flavor words mean?!
We’re going to help explain how to understand beans and flavor characteristics, so you can get the best coffee for you.
Table of Contents
Understand Coffee Roasts
What is Coffee Strength?
Click below to learn about the 3 main places to buy coffee and the pros & cons of each
What's the Difference Between Espresso vs Filtered Roast?
Standard Supermarket Coffee Roasts
Marketing Tactics of Commercial Coffee Makers
In some cases, descriptions can be so odd or unusual or kind of contrary and clashing that it really doesn’t make sense. But it sounds good to a beginner coffee consumer. It will sound completely delicious.
Those coffee descriptions from commercial coffee makers promise a great deal. If you say my coffee is going to taste of caramel, well, I expect it to taste almost as if you’ve put caramel in the bag.
This leads to further confusion with the consumer who thinks, “Oh, is this like a flavored coffee?” “Is this like a caramel flavored coffee?” Don’t make the mistake, those exist, but more often than not, commercial coffee makers are not living up to their marketing. They’re trying to communicate something about the coffee’s tastes to you with that word. And we’ll come to that a bit more very soon.
Quick tip: specialty coffee is a little bit like wine. There is an exception, the most expensive wines are often the most elegant, the most classic, and they would be familiar and enjoyable to most people.
The highest priced coffees tend to be the most unusual, the least kind of coffee-tasting coffees. That is the suggestion to bear in mind.
If you’re looking at a more expensive coffee, have a look at those words. Do they promise you a very unusual experience? And is that what you want? And in some cases, yes, it is. And in other cases, no, it’s not.
How Coffee Roasters Come Up with Descriptions
Top 3 misleading coffee descriptions
Generally, if there isn’t a texture adjective on the coffee bag then it’s medium-bodied.
Learn the 3 Golden Rules of Buying Coffee and Never buy bad coffee again!
Understanding Coffee Flavors
If a description has no fruit words, then I would expect very low acidity from it. However, if they’re using other words like caramel or treacle or nuts or chocolate, those are non-fruit words, suggesting low acidity in that regard.
Coffee Beans: Fruit & Fermentation
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Looking for coffee or espresso on the go? Maybe for your next camping trip or job-site. Whatever your reason check out this article to find out which on is best for your needs.