Personal journal of a Christian woman
A step-by-step guide on going from novice to pro
Published on January 8, 2004 By wvjcgirl In Consumer Issues

Common Mistakes of the Coffee Drinking Novice

What could be better than to start your day with a nice hot cup of freshly brewed coffee? For millions of people worldwide this thought is the only inspiration that motivates their legs to swing on out of their bed and shuffle to the kitchen to begin another daily routine. According to Coffee Universe at coffee is the most popular beverage after water with over 400 billion cups consumed annually. That is a lot of coffee! Beginning coffee drinkers are in danger of committing coffee offenses simply by lack of knowledge on how to select a quality coffee blend that will suit their taste buds and lifestyle. Many a coffee novice, ashamed of their ignorance, have continued to buy and prepare coffee that they feel tastes bad, simply because they did not know the ABC’s of coffee selection such as the proper method of preparation, roast, and blend.

Selecting the right method of preparation is the foundation of an excellent cup of coffee. Most American coffee drinkers buy a large metal can of pre-ground coffee off the grocery store shelf and simply scoop out the directed amount into their drip coffee maker. This is the most inexpensive and easiest preparation method, however, it does not really taste very good. A little known fact about the coffee bean itself is that the process of grinding the bean releases the flavorful oils within and these oils begin to dry out as soon as they hit the air. Purchasing the coffee beans whole and then grinding only the portion that one needs each day retains the flavor of the bean and therefore enhancing the enjoyment of the coffee.

Another common mystery of the novice coffee drinker is “What in the world is a roast?” Unsure of the meaning of this term, they grab the cheapest can they can find off the shelf. Unfortunately, this careless purchase can lead to a month or more of bitter tasting coffee, as selecting the correct roast for the method of preparation is of utmost importance. Eventually, the can will empty and the novice will venture back to the grocery store to try again. It is during the roasting process that the actual flavors of the coffee bean are extracted from within and settle on the outer part of the bean. The longer the bean is roasted, the darker the bean becomes. This is where the terms “light roast” and “dark roast” come from. National Geographic at suggests that the lighter roasts are somewhat sour and the darker roasts are sweeter. Contradictory to popular belief, the darker the roast the less the caffeine, as this is something that is extracted out during the roasting process. I have noticed while shopping that one of the most popular canned coffees on the grocery store shelf today is an Arabica roast. This Italian roast is very dark and traditionally reserved for blending in espresso due to its low acidity. Using this roast all by itself in a common household drip coffee maker will leave a burnt, charred taste in ones mouth! However, it is perfectly suited for an espresso blend when mixed with other roasts, as it adds a little ‘kick.’

Mixing different kinds of coffee beans together is what is commonly known in the coffee world as a ‘blend.’ The average espresso blend contains three to seven different kinds of beans that have been blended together to create a unique flavor, according to information gathered from A blend will usually consist of a mixture of the same roasts; for example, a dark blend would then contain many different types of dark roasts blended together. On the Moore Coffee & Tea website located at blending varieties of coffee roasts requires a thorough understanding of the nature of each individual type of bean and how it will mix with other beans to harmonize together and become a balanced blend. This expertise leads to an extraordinary experience on the part of the customer when they put the blend through their coffee grinder and enjoy the taste! Sadly, the novice coffee drinker misses this experience when drinking a poorly blended canned pre-ground coffee.

As you can see, drinking a tasty cup of coffee requires a little knowledge on the part of the person enjoying the experience. Knowing a few simple facts on the correct preparation of the coffee, as well as selecting the right roast and blend will quickly turn a novice coffee drinker into an expert. Waking up in the morning will turn from a half-hearted drudgery of shuffling to the coffee pot to a confident excitement of the flavorful cup that awaits the carefully selected beans waiting to release their fresh flavor in the grinder and pot.

on Jan 08, 2004
Keeping a clean coffee maker and using filtered water also help produce tasty coffee. I have a Bunn Pour-o-Matic that makes a mighty quick pot to keep the java flowing. Gotta have coffee to keep my eyes open sometimes
on Jan 08, 2004
LOL That is true!