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About the Art of Coffee Roasting

Sep 5, 2008
Do you like dark, rich flavor from your coffee? Or do you prefer a lighter, brighter taste? Perhaps you're in the middle, and you enjoy coffee that has a rich, bright flavor without all of the bitterness that some coffees have.

Coffee roasts are like ice cream flavors: some people love them all, some have one favorite flavor that they stick to. Whichever type of person you are, it's nice to understand the way that roasting works and the various flavors that are produced by different roasting processes.

Before coffee beans are ground and brewed, it is roasted. There are various stages that take part during the roasting process.

There are four basic categories of roasts: light, medium, full and dark. Each roast type has a specific temperature and roasting time to ensure that the beans reach the ultimate flavor.

Light roasted coffee beans have a very mild taste, and the beans' color is comparable to cinnamon. These blends tend to have a sweeter flavor, and the light roast process is best when used with beans from the Americas. Light roasted coffee has a sweet, butterscotch flavor.

The medium roast has a slightly hearty overtone that cannot be found in the light roast; however, the flavor is still delicate and light. The heartier taste can be attributed to the increased roasting time. Medium roasts sometimes have a flavor that can be compared to caramel or chocolate.

Full roasted beans give off a full-bodied flavor that is never bitter. Overall, the full roast is something of an all-purpose roast, as it compliments many different types of blends. Its medium to dark roast is popular with many different coffee lovers. Some full roasted coffee beans will have a chocolatey flavor, while others will taste of vanilla.

Dark roasted beans are very dark brown and give coffee a flavor that is strong and bittersweet. These coffee beans are roasted at a higher temperature; this draws the aromatic oils within the bean to the surface. At the surface, the oil caramelizes, turning the bean a rich brown color.

There are few coffees that can stand up to the dark roasting process. Those that do give off unique flavors that can range from an earthy taste to a molasses flavor to a hint of vanilla nut.

Coffee lovers, it is time for you to trek out into the world of coffee roasting. Try different roasts, or stick with the one that you love.
About the Author
Wendy Moyer is an independent journalist. Diedrich.com and CoffeePeople.com are trusted resources that offer consumers the chance to purchase high quality gourmet coffee beans, coffee K cups, organic espresso coffee beans - further information can be found on the Diedrich.com and CoffeePeople.com websites.
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