There’s nothing better than opening up a bag of freshly roasted coffee beans for the first time. The caramel notes and the fruity fragrances warm your soul and deliver a rush of sensory pleasure that will live with you forever.
At Creature HQ, we think about freshness a lot.
Freshly roasted coffee beans taste better. Okay, maybe we’re a bit obsessive about the whole fresh thing but it really does matter. Especially as most bags of coffee are sat on grocery store shelves, going stale. Let me explain.
Coffee beans are years in the making
Coffee plants grow best in tropical climates around the equator. These plants produce cherries that are hand picked for their coffee seeds and processed into what we know as green coffee beans.
These green beans are transported across the world and if kept in a climate controlled environment, can last for up to several months. The beans are roasted, cooled and packaged, ready for consumption.
the roasting process
Roasting the raw green coffee seeds turns them into the brown coffee beans we all see in our coffee shops and grocery stores. During this roasting process, hundreds of chemical and physical reactions occur creating new aromatic compounds.
As soon as the beans pop out of the roaster onto the cooling shelf, gases start to escape from the bean. At this point, the beans need to settle for a couple of days before they are ready to be brewed and consumed.
This is the start of the aging process.
The prime time to brew coffee is 2 – 14 days after the roast date. This is when we deem the roasted coffee beans to be at the height of their freshness. It’s when the aromas and flavors are at their best. During this peak time of freshness, the gases (mainly CO2) continue to escape from the bean, making the flavors evolve until they start to fade.
After two weeks, the aromas and flavors start to diminish and we term this as a loss in freshness. Thirty days after the roast date, you’ll noticeably taste the difference. Brewing with stale beans will never produce a good cup of coffee. Some unpleasant, generic coffee flavors may even start to develop.
Why do coffee beans go stale?
Oxygen is the enemy to the freshly roasted coffee bean! Oxygen causes the solubles in coffee to degrade and oxidize meaning the coffee beans lose flavor. Keeping your beans away from oxygen will keep them fresher for longer.
How to keep your coffee fresh
Why should we care? Well, freshly roasted coffee beans taste better. So the way you buy, store and brew your beans is important. There are a few small things that you can do to ensure you’re brewing the fresh stuff!
Check the roast date
On each bag of specialty coffee, you’ll notice a roast date. Check for this when buying your coffee beans. Restock your coffee every one or two weeks. Only buy as much as you and your household need.
Near the top of your bag of coffee, you may have noticed a small round piece of plastic with a couple of holes. This is a degassing valve. It lets the CO2 gases out while keeping the oxygen at bay, keeping your coffee fresher for longer.
Sunlight and moisture are the coffee beans worst enemy. Keep them out of the sun and do not put them in your fridge or freezer. Changing your beans climate from cold to warm will cause condensation that will do more damage than good.
Keep your beans in an air tight or sealed container. A dark glass or ceramic jar stored away in a kitchen cupboard is perfect.
Grinding your beans
Grind your coffee just before you brew. Grinding accelerates the aging process and coffee starts to lose flavor quickly. If you’re on the road or camping, try to take a small hand held grinder rather than pre-grinding.
Check out – Grinding Coffee: Getting it Right.
Get freshly roasted coffee beans
Call us a bit obsessive if you like, but we believe freshness is one of the key ingredients in brewing a delicious cup of coffee. A cup of coffee so good, you’ll tell your friends about it.
When we started Creature Coffee Co, we wanted everyone to brew with freshly roasted coffee. Roasters also want the beans they’ve skillfully crafted to be enjoyed while they are fresh and bursting with flavor.
We partner with the best, top-rated and award-winning local roasters and select only the best quality beans. Your coffee is roasted once we’ve received your order and shipped within 24 hours, direct to your door. No lurking in warehouses, no sitting on shelves and no waste. We insist.