Thursday, August 09, 2007

"Fresh" Roasted Coffee Beans

"Fresh brewed coffee" is a commonly used and understood term. We have all experienced the results of a pot of brewed coffee that has been on the warmer too long. But what about "fresh" roasted coffee. As with all natural foods, roasted coffee beans spoil with time. It is the spoiling of the oils in the beans that most effect the flavor of the brew. The oils with time and exposure to oxygen become rancid. Before coffee beans are roasted(known as green coffee beans) the oils in the beans are naturally protected(won't get into the science of it in this post) for up to a year with proper storage. But once roasted the oils become extremely vulnerable to deterioration. The fresh flavors only last for about 10 to 20 days!!! After that the stale tastes begin to show up. Think of the difference in the taste of "fresh milk" compared to what it tastes like just as it turns a little sour a couple days after the "use by" date. It is the most protected secret in the coffee industry. Yes!!! that means you have been drinking stale/rancid coffee for years and probably weren't even aware of it. You have probably never experienced the sweet and incredible flavors in fresh coffee. The good thing is you now know better. And yes you can buy "fresh" roasted coffee or even learn to roast your own as many homeroasters now do. Some local roasters or coffee shops will sell you fresh roasted beans and will indicate the date roasted(if they can't tell you the roast date don't buy them. Or there are a number of online roasters that can have fresh beans on your doorstep within 3 days of roasting giving you a couple weeks to truly enjoy. Always grind just before brewing(ground coffee becomes stale much faster). And store your beans in a airtight container or in a one way valve coffee bag in a cool dry place. The fridge or freezer is not recommended(future post). Warning! once you've experienced fresh roasted coffee you will not want to drink anything but.
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