Trying to figure out which discount gourmet coffee to buy? Once you understand the descriptors of the beans and the manner in which it is roasted, you may have more confidence in finding the coffee that suits your preferences.
The names of the beans normally do not refer to the kind of coffee plant they come from; instead, the name can refer to any of the following.
Quite simply, a name may designate where the bean was grown (Ethiopia, Colombia, Kenya, Yemen). Sometimes the name of the plantation is included in the coffee’s name as well. Coffees can be designated as “single-origin” coffees that is, originating from one country only or “blends,” a combination of beans from a variety of geographical areas. Generally, blended coffees produce more complex brews than single-origin coffees.
Once at their destination, the green coffee beans are roasted (that is, heated in a large roasting drum to develop a desired flavor and color). The longer the coffee beans roast, the darker their color and the stronger their flavor, so if you know how strong you like your coffee, you will be better prepared to select the appropriate roasting style.
Coffee Roaster’s preferences:
Often, coffee roasters will put their own mark on a batch of beans, blending and roasting the beans according to the roaster’s preferences. Often, names such as “House Blend” will tell you little; but the names sometimes give clues as to how the coffee roaster envisioned the coffee to be enjoyed, such as “Eye-Opener Roast” or “Dessert Blend.
Styles of Coffee Roasts
- French and Italian roasts:
Dark, heavy-roasted coffee beans that are almost black in color and produce a strongly flavored coffee.
- American roast:
A medium-roasted coffee, which produces a coffee that’s neither characteristically light nor heavy.
- European roast:
Two-thirds heavy-roasted coffee beans combined with one-third medium-roasted beans.
- Viennese roast:
One-third heavy-roasted coffee beans combined with two-thirds medium-roasted beans
To further clarify the coffee roasts;
- Light roasts have several names that they are known by, depending upon the location that you purchase them. When you look at these coffee beans they will appear the color of milk chocolate. Contrary to popular belief,, the light roast coffes actually contain more caffeine than dark roasted coffee – as much as 10% more, in fact! Generally, origin coffees are roasted to a light degree to bring out the best qualities of the coffee.
- Medium roasts are familiar to you as a City Roast or Breakfast Roast or American Roast. These beans have a dark brown color and may display some oily spots of the coffee’s natural oils coming to the surface. Medium roasts are less acidic while more spicey and nutty undertones become apparent.
- Dark roasts are described as European, French, Italian, Espresso, Full City or Viennese. These descriptors are not of the origin of the coffees, but the degree of the roasting of the coffee beans. This coffee bean will be almost black in color and be shiney from the oils of the beans. The individual characteristics may be very discrete when roasted to this level. This coffee will have a deep flavor reminiscent of an earthy, smokey flavor. This roast has a bittersweet wash to it.
Choosing the Right Coffee Bean:
With the basics of coffee now in your repertoir, you still have some research to do in order to decide which coffee best suits your taste.
Because coffees grown in the same parts of the world can have similar characteristics, knowing your coffee’s origins can help you decide if it will be one you like. Coffees from Africa are often imbued with the aromas and flavors of berries, citrus fruits, cocoa and spices, while coffees from Latin America are known for their lighter body and cleaner flavors. Coffee beans from Southeast Asia are often full-bodied and smooth.
When selecting a coffee, think about whether you like bright, citrus notes or nutty, caramel flavors or even the earthy, smokey flavor in your cup. Once you’ve got this overall picture of origins and roasting styles in your mind, honing your personal likes and dislikes involves the enjoyable task of trying a little of this and a little of that when you have a chance.
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Kopi Luwak is highly regarded as the gourmet coffee delight of Vietnam and Southeast Asia . Kopi Luwak is “Civet Coffee” or “Weasel Coffee” because it is brewed from beans that have passed through the digestive tract of the civet–a cat-like or weasel-like creature that feasts on coffee berries but cannot digest the bean at the berry’s core. Kopi Luwak beans have their unique, “hiden” flavors released by the process of passing through the stomach and digestive tract of the civet and being exposed to its digestive enzymes. There is no amount or technique of roasting that can bring out the subtly nuanced flavors of the beans better than the civet’s enzymes, meaning that without this animal this great gourmet coffee delight simply could not exist. Civet farms, where the animals are treated as beloved pets, as well as wild civet preservations in the mountains of Southeast Asia have been created in order to produce as many enzymatically-treated beans for Kopi Luwak as there possibly can be, but the production still remains very limited .
However, since Kopi Luwak is the most exotic among gourmet coffees, it is pricey. Many coffee lovers feel that they can’t afford it, at least not much of it. So to that end Vietnam’s most famous coffee house and coffee producer, Trung Nguyen, has developed with the help of german scientists a brand of gourmet coffee called Legendee. Legendee is one of the world’s most famous gourmet coffees, as it is a unique, enzymatically-treated coffee just as Kopi Luwak is, the difference of course being that Legendee is artificially treated with enzymes whereas the civet is needed to make Kopi Luwak. Legendee is considered to be the closest artificially-treated coffee in flavor to Kopi Luwak. Arabica and Excelsa beans are blended together to create this one of a kind formula.
Most recently Trung Nguyen has developed its Legendee Gold to have a brighter flavor and more of the traditionally Arabica aroma and acidity that many coffee drinkers love. On the front of the package they’ve placed a mountain symbol to stand for the high-altitude range where Legendee is produced and which gives it its unique and exotic flavor. Gourmet coffee drinkers who visit Vietnam cannot have a complete, fulfilling trip unless they sit in a Trung Nguyen coffeehouse and taste of the Legendee as it gets brewed in the the single-cup metallic Phin filters. And Legendee has rapidly become the gourmet favorite
So if you love gourmet coffee and you want to experience the extraordinary taste and feel of Kopi Luwak but you aren’t sure you have the money for it, try out Legendee , which you can find to order online.
Recycling things has become an every day occurrence for most of us. It not only makes sense financially but it is also kinder for the environment. Recently there has been some research conducted in the UK that looks at the feasibility of using recycled vegetable oil as a way to heat buildings. But it looks as if there may be more than just vegetable oil which could be used for this purpose. We may also be able to reduce our heating oil bills by using used coffee grounds in the future.
The fact that coffee grounds may be able to heat your home might come as a surprise. It certainly was something that I had never considered. It turns out though that coffee grounds contain oil and that this can be extracted to create a type of biodiesel. At the moment there is research being carried out in the University of Missouri in order to measure the feasibility of this type of recycling. If they find that it is a possibility it might not be too long before everyone can start taking advantage of this method.
Coffee lovers all over the world will be delighted to know that there are even more advantages to drinking this beverage. And those who are only too keen to point out the bad elements of drinking coffee might be put in their place if it can help the environment too. We can say that we are helping to reduce our fuel costs. But in fairness it really must be seen as a plus if it can reduce our heating bills in any way and if it even contributes in some way to reducing our carbon footprints. However although it might be some time before we can actually avail of this method of heating our homes, we should still do all we can to encourage the research into it.
Getting the home heated up during winter can be very expensive. Fuel such as electricity and gas show no signs of coming down in price. Clever people are switching to heating oil as a fuel though. Cheapest heating oil make sure the nations oil tanks stay full. Oil suppliers are prevalent throughout the UK, and will supply, for instance heating oil Ashbourne.
Many companies who tout their coffee on television talk about how their coffee is mountain grown. This has probably left you wondering, “Is mountain grown coffee really that much better?” The short answer is yes, mountain grown coffee has a much better flavor than coffee grown elsewhere.
There are many factors to delicious coffee and one of the more important factors is the climate in which the coffee is grown. Coffee that is grown naturally generally has a better flavor than coffee beans that were grown in full sun with the aid of fertilizers. Partial sun is also a great environment for the coffee to grow at the best rate. Beans from coffee trees grown in full sun tend to not have as desirable flavor as those from trees grown in the shade. The higher elevations of the mountains keep the coffee plants at around 70 degrees which is a prime growing environment for coffee.
Probably the most desired coffee is Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee. At a price of $26-$40 per pound, Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee isn’t just expensive, it comes with a beautiful, well balanced flavor with medium acidity and perfect body. The unique soil and perfect climate conditions in the Blue Mountains of Jamaica are unrivaled throughout the world. The geology and topology of this area provides the ideal location for coffee growth, but the area is fairly small which lends to higher prices in coffee.
Coffee trees not only grow best at high altitudes, but the beans they produce are much higher quality than beans from a coffee tree growing in other conditions. Since many coffee trees grow best in shade, plants that grow in shade produce better flavored beans than those in full sun.
Coffee trees also grow best with moderate winds. Areas that meet the needs of coffee trees are usually tropical and sub-tropical environments as these areas also experience heavy rain which is also necessary for the growth of perfect coffee beans.
With the increased popularity of various coffee drinks since the coffee house boom of the late 90s, many people now not only brew their own coffee at home, but roast it too! There are many coffee roasters on the market which make the coffee roasting process very easy. Those without a proper coffee roaster can try out the process using a hot air popcorn popper. Those who use this method should start roasting with the popcorn popper and watch for what is known in the coffee roasting world as “the first crack.” After the coffee beans are roasted, they should be allowed to let cool for 24 hours before they are used to brew coffee.
Many people who wish to roast their own coffee actually make the move to owning a coffee roaster. It is important to find a good roaster because with the perfect roast a cup of coffee can taste amazing. If the beans have been roasted too long, the coffee can taste burnt. The most important part about roasting beans is timing. It’s extremely important to keep an eye on the beans so that they do not burn and can be removed when they reach the perfect roast. Those who are new to roasting should consider getting a fluid bed which allows them to watch the beans as it is made of clear glass canisters. The perfect roast can be achieved through trial and error. After a while those new to roasting will be able to tell when their coffee beans have achieved the perfect roast.
There are two main types of roasters available on the market. Fluid bed roasters (also known as air roasters) are one type. The other type is drum roasters. Each type performs the basic function of roasting the beans, but it’s important for those looking to buy a roaster to understand the different ways in which the two types of roasters. Regardless of the type of roaster chosen, roasting coffee at home can save money and give way to better tasting coffee.