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| Written by Miles Spencer

How to Choose the Best Coffee

Choosing the best coffee to match your tastes can sometimes take a bit of time and experimentation; the diversity of flavours and characteristics in the world of coffee can mean that, while there is plenty of varieties to choose from, there is almost certainly the right bean for anyone.

When choosing the ideal coffee, there are a few key areas that we can pay attention to in order to get the most from the coffee experience.

Getting the Grind Right

Not only is the grind size of your coffee important for matching your favourite brewing method, but it can also be used to tailor your coffees according to your personal taste.

At Coffee-Direct, we sell whole beans, as well as pre-ground coffees that are precisely ground to specific sizes in order to work best with a range of popular brewing methods: cafetiere, filter, espresso maker, percolator and Turkish coffee. Accordingly, our ‘cafetiere’ pre-ground options are ground to a coarser size, with our ‘espresso’ and ‘Turkish’ options being the finest grinds.

However, if you prefer to grind your whole beans at home, you can tailor your grind to match your tastes; getting an ideal grind for your espresso maker or other brewing equipment will result in a more flavourful and aromatic coffee.

For this reason, it’s good to consider your brewing method when selecting your bean.

Choosing the Right Roast

When a green coffee cherry is roasted, it is transformed into the magical coffee bean that we know and love. The roast level of a coffee bean dictates three key aspects of how the coffee will taste: acidity, sweetness and bitterness. By taking the roast level of a coffee variety into consideration, you will have a better chance of finding the perfect bean to match your tastes.

At Coffee-Direct, we categorise our coffees into four roast levels: Medium, Dark, Espresso and Continental:

  • Our lighter, Medium roasts generally make coffees of lower strength than our darker roasts and are often sweet, with bright flavours that can include notes of fruit, nut or chocolate.
  • Dark roasted beans tend to be roasted for longer than lighter, medium roasts, which results in a coffee with a fuller body. The flavours of dark roasted coffees can reveal bitter chocolate and sometimes spicy notes.
  • Our strong, deep Espresso roast is rich in flavours and aromas and is, as expected, perfect for espressos. However, although the full body and powerful flavours are very well-suited to a smaller coffee, our Espresso roasts can still be enjoyed when prepared as a filter coffee or using a cafetiere.
  • Our darkest roasted coffee, Continental roast, offers heady aromas and well-balanced, rich and robust flavours. The low acidity and strength of this roast make it ideal for intense espressos, although it also works well for rich filter coffees. 

Finding the Ideal Flavours

Many factors go into determining how a bean will taste once it has been brewed and made into a delicious cup of coffee: growing regions, climate, altitude, rainfall and soil all contribute to the final flavour profile and aromas, with specific tasting notes that are unique to each variety.

There are a number of more common flavours that might be present in a particular coffee: some beans reveal sweet flavours of chocolate or caramel; delicious nutty or fruity notes are common, as well as earthy, smoky or even woody aspects; a coffee might be mellow and creamy, or sharp and citrusy.

With such a diverse world of flavours available, it might seem tricky to make a choice. That’s why we include the option to search our wide range of coffees by particular flavours, as well as by roast, acidity level, strength, region and more – simply browse our range of coffees and use the handy selections to filter down our range and find your perfect bean!