Facts you need to know about coffee if you want to brew your own at home
Coffee is one topic that is not easy to touch on just because everyone is expected to just know… So basically, most people don’t know anything about coffee, even if they don’t miss their daily cup.
Like in math class, there are things that we don’t even know we don’t know, so we are taking this chance to clear things up and tell you a bit more about coffee.
If you are venturing into brewing your own coffee, we hope that it will make your daily cup even better!
The roasting date
Have you ever looked at your coffee bag and seen a roasting date? I mean obviously it is the day it was roasted, but what does it imply? What do we do with that information?
Many people don’t know how long it takes for the coffee to lose its «freshness,» let us explain.
Coffee usually has a «roasting date» but not a «best before» date because if you consume that coffee after its prime, it’s not going to make you sick.
But… If you are really into brewing your own coffee, you should care about the ideal freshness of your beans.
First of all, the roasting date alone is not enough to tell if the coffee is actually good.
Here are some tips to make sure that you are making the best of your coffee:
- Do not bulk buy
Treat coffee as you would treat veggies or bread, buy enough for the week and no more.
- Buy coffee that’s been roasted anywhere from 7 to 21 days from the roasting date.
It is said that coffee reaches its peak between 7 and 14 days after it has been roasted.
If you drink coffee that has been roasted less than 7 days ago, it is too fresh. Still releasing CO2 and degassing.
Now, suppose we are talking about coffee that’s older than 14 days. In that case, it does not necessarily mean that it is stale. It just means that its sweetness and acidity will keep decreasing, but still, it varies from each roaster.
Some coffees reach their prime a month after their roasting date, so if you are able to ask a barista or even the roasters, please do! It will make a difference.
In conclusion? Take the roast date as a guide, but always keep an open mind and just open the bag, smell it and evaluate it.
Feel free to experiment; that’s the fun thing about brewing your own coffee.
Does fresher mean better
Not really. As we stated before, many variables make a coffee «good» We think the storage is even more important than the roast date.
Once you open a bag of coffee, the clock starts ticking, so make sure you have the proper coffee containers and a suitable spot to keep it.
Some tips for storing your coffee:
- Shield it from oxygen
Oxygen makes the coffee decay quicker. Sometimes it’s better to buy the whole bean, so the outer shell protects it.
- Keep it in an opaque container.
Light is the enemy. It degrades the coffee.
- Keep it away from heat.
Same logic as keeping your food in the freezer. It prolongs its life.
So it’s best to keep your coffee inside of an opaque container, at room temperature and nowhere near a heat source.
When you are brewing coffee at home, the temperature is one of the main factors to get the best coffee. Therefore, mastering the perfect temperature is a must.
You must know that getting all the variables correct on your first tries will probably not be the case, but be patient, and you will get there with time.
To brew the perfect cup, you need clean water, then you need to get it to the correct temperature.
If your water gets too hot, then your coffee will taste bitter. If it’s too cold, it will taste weak.
Experts recommend that the temperature should be between 195-205F for the best outcome.
Don’t forget that water boils at 212F, so there is a small window between the perfect temperature and boiling water.
So if you are really eager to get it right, a thermometer can come in handy.
But, it doesn’t have to be that stressful. You can also bring your kettle to boil, leave it a bit, maybe around 60 seconds, and then pour it into your french press or whatever vessel you are using to brew your coffee.
Many people take water for granted, but it is one of the main variables for brewing coffee.
The type of water you use for your brew will alter the taste of your cup.
First of all, do not panic. If your water at home tastes good, it is probably suitable for brewing.
But if you are using tap water to make your coffee, maybe changing it to filtered water will change the game for you.
Here are some tips to make sure your water is up to standard:
- Use the cold water faucet
It is tempting to use the hot one to boil faster, but the cold one is always fresher.
- Do not reuse the water that’s left on the kettle.
Same reason, it’s not fresh.
- Consider buying a filter if you are not sure about your tap water.
It will improve the quality of your brew
- Bottled water is okay
Try to buy spring water. It’s usually fresh and tastes good.
Coffee is all about finding your own brew. Of course, it is important to consider some factors to make sure you are making the best out of your coffee, but always remember that no one has the last word.
Every single thing we know about coffee, we have discovered it by trying new things and failing or by succeeding.
You can always take courses to improve your knowledge, but do not lose that drive to experiment and do the unexpected.
As a coffee shop owned by coffee lovers, we respect and admire the skills of a barista, but remember that each of them started by learning.
As always, if you are in Miami, you are welcome to come to ITSI and enjoy the most delicious specialty coffee made by our amazing baristas.
Maybe you can take the chance to ask a few questions here and there!
If you get hungry, we also have a variety of options, from snacks to full meals!
And if you can’t make it but still want to give our coffee or food a try, order online, and we’ll bring it to your doorstep.