How to select for good coffee beans

Written by Coffee & Nuts

Before we get into the actual process for selecting good beans to brew a great cup of coffee, let's learn a little bit about coffee!

Coffee lovers across the world crave for a good cup of coffee in the morning. For a good cup of coffee, the foremost requirement is ground coffee. We get ground coffee by grinding coffee beans. The coffee beans are the seeds of the coffee plant. These seeds look like beans in shape, so these are famous as beans.

The majority of people in the world love to drink coffee. It was initially a product of Arabian land. But, at present, India, Brazil, Honduras, Indonesia, Columbia, and Vietnam are the producers of the coffee.  

Coffee beans do not come to us directly from the coffee plants. Coffee growers pick the coffee fruit or cherry from the plants. After picking, they process the beans. This processing separates beans or seeds from the cherries.

There are two processes for separating beans:

  1. Dry process
  2. Wet process

Dry Process 

In the dry process, the cherries are left exposed under the Sunlight. Sunlight dries the cherries. Subsequently, beans come out of the dried cherries.

Wet Process

We use water to separate beans from the cherries before drying. This process gives a better quality of coffee 

And, then, the roasting of beans at varying degrees of temperature takes place. 

The flavor and aroma of the beans depend on the roasting temperature. Sometimes roasters blend a variety of beans. These roasters are generally big coffee importing companies. These companies sell coffee beans under their respective brand names.

Now, there is an aspect that every coffee lover should know at least.

How to select for good coffee beans?

We would like to share with you a few tips to select good coffee beans.

Know Your Choice

Basically, there are 2 types of Coffee beans- Arabica and Robusta. Arabica type is famous for flavor, aroma, and low caffeine content. 

Robusta has a harsh flavor and high caffeine content. But in the market, many varieties of coffee beans are available. Some of these are Liberica, Excelsa, Gesha, Borbon, Jackson, Villa Sarchi, Maragotype, Mocca, Kent, S795, selection9, Catura, and Cauveri.

The quality of coffee beans also depends on the climate and soil of the growing region. Apart from these varieties, many roasters also sell their products under their brand names.

All of these varieties have different flavors, aroma, and caffeine content. You will also get different blends. So, while selecting coffee beans, go for a good coffee brand as per your choice and budget.

Region of Origin

The climate and soil of the plantation region have an impact on the flavor and taste of coffee beans. Till now, only a handful of tropical countries used to produce coffee, but many new cultivators have come in the coffee arena.

Select beans from the region, which you know well and like the most. These are some qualities of the coffee-producing regions.

 India 

India produces the S795 variety of Arabica. It has good quality and flavor. 

Brazil

Brazil is the largest grower of coffee. Its coffee is sweet and gives an excellent flavor and has low acidity.

Vietnam

Vietnam grows Robusta beans, and it is the second-largest grower of the coffee. These have high caffeine content and a harsh flavor.

Honduras

It grows Arabica beans, and the wet process is prevalent here. Its coffee has a delicately sweet taste. 

Colombia 

It is a coffee with a mild flavor and medium acidity, burnt sugar sweetness, and a touch of a strange taste.

Indonesia 

It grows Java and Sumatra varieties of coffee. These have excellent flavor and low acidity with balanced caffeine content.

Ethiopia

Ethiopia is the originator of coffee. There are many varieties and different processing methods prevalent here. Hence, it has coffee beans of diverse flavors.

Kenya

Extra sunshine in Kenya and its processing methods makes its coffee excess sweet. Its sweet taste resembles that of black grapes.

Roast Date 

Always buy freshly roasted beans. Though beans do not have an expiry date, these do carry best before date. They give their best flavor within one week from the roasting date. After some days of roasting, beans begin to degas and lose flavor and aroma.

Roasting Style

Roasting changes the color of beans from green to blackish brown. In roasting, change of sugar contents of beans into caramel takes place. The caramel has the taste of burnt sugar. Hence, dark roast coffee tastes harsh. If you want a good flavor and aroma, ask for a lighter roast.  For an intense coffee, go for a dark roast.

Roaster Name

When you are buying beans, look for the roasters brand name. There are many good roasters which are providing quality products. Each roaster processes beans with a distinct style. That makes their beans unique. 

No Bulk Buying

Avoid buying beans in bulk because these lose their freshness in storage. Try to buy the quantity enough to consume in a week.

Caffeine Content

Each type or variety of coffee has different caffeine content. Caffeine is a nerve stimulator. It makes us feel energetic after having coffee. Arabica has low caffeine, while Robusta has high caffeine content.

You will get various blends and varieties, having varying levels of caffeine. The packaging of beans displays caffeine levels on it. You should opt for caffeine content according to your choice.

Your Personal Taste

Given all the tips that we have told you about, ultimately what matters should be a coffee you like!  If you like a smooth and delicate taste, you should go for lighter colored beans. These beans are lightly roasted, and their coffee has a mild taste.

On the other hand, if you want a stronger and bolder flavor profile, you should opt for dark-colored beans. These are roasted for a longer time, giving them a bitter taste and intense flavor.

100% Coffee or Arabica

Do not pay attention to such labels. These are only to draw your attention. You should go for renowned brands and choose from them.

Look At Label 

Label at the packing carries all information about the product and certifications. Study closely before making any purchase. If it does not mention what you want, leave it.

Final Thoughts  

In the article above, we have tried to solve the puzzle of coffee beans selection. But this selection depends on trial and error also. It takes a lot of experience to select good coffee beans.

So, next time you buy coffee beans, follow the above tips, be ready to do some trial and error. You will end up selecting good coffee beans.

Coffee and Nuts is a traditional coffee powder and beans wholesaler in Singapore. We take pride in processing our beans the traditional way to give you a great cup of coffee everytime

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