How much do you know about the coffee in your cup? Here's a short overview to give you a better understanding of how that great tasting Coast Roast Coffee is created.
Coffee beans are actually the seed to a cherry that grows on a coffee plant. The two most common coffee plants are Arabic and Robusta. A coffee plant will start producing cherries in it's fourth or fifth year and produce about 10 pounds of cherries each year. (This equates to approximate 1 pound of roasted beans.)
These cherries turn a bright reddish purple as they ripen which takes roughly seven months. The ripened cherries are hand pick when grown at high altitudes like most Central American or Indonesian coffees. Coffees grown on flatter farms may be machine picked.
In Dry Processing, the cherries are laid out on flat trays, like in the picture, or on the ground to dry in the sun. In Wet Processing, the cherries are submerged in water for up to 24 hours to loosen the skin so it can more easily removed. With either method, the cherries are then processed in a tumbling machine that will remove the skin and pulp of the cherry leaving only the seed, or the green coffee bean.
Roasting green coffee beans is a quick process taking anywhere from 12-18 minutes depending on how dark you want your beans. During the roasting process, the water inside the beans evaporates and causes the bean to crack. At this point, the sugars inside the coffee bean are changing and this is when the flavor of the coffee begins to drastically change. The size of the bean will start to increase or puff up, similar to popcorn kernels when heated. For darker roasts, the beans will crack a second time and oils will be released from the beans.
There are many different ways to brew your coffee. Here are the most popular ones.
- Auto Drip Coffee maker
- Cold brew
- Espresso machine
- French Press
- Pour over
No matter how you choose to brew your coffee, you should always wait to grind your coffee until right before you will consume it.
Coffee begins to lose freshness almost immediately after roasting. Try to buy smaller batches more frequently - enough for two weeks. Your beans’ greatest enemies are air, moisture, heat, and light. So to preserve the flavor as long as possible, store beans in an opaque, air-tight container at room temperature. Keep your beans in a dark and cool location. If possible, invest in storage canisters with an airtight seal.
- Store as a whole bean, not ground coffee
- Store beans in an opaque airtight container
- Keep beans in a dark and cool location, room temperature is fine (avoid sunlight and excessive heat)