When I first started looking into the different types of coffee beans I had no idea what flavor sensations were in store. Fruity, rich chocolate, caramel, spicy and smoky were descriptions that were being thrown around. Are we talking about coffee? This was intriguing. Why were there were so many different flavors? Well, it all begins with the beans so let me tell you a little bit about them.
We start with organic green coffee beans. A coffee bean is actually the seed of a coffee cherry. Once the red ripe cherries are picked from the tree, they are dried (usually in sunlight) and then the outer portion of the dried cherry is removed. This leaves the coffee bean which is then sorted either by hand or on a conveyer belt. They are sorted by size and density (lighter beans which are as good to the heavier ones, which is a quality bean). These unroasted beans are green coffee beans which are shipped around the world to become our light, medium or dark roast coffee.
The green coffee beans are roasted in a large drum for about 5 to 7 minutes. It smells a bit like popcorn. The beans double in size and crackle as they get bigger. After the first pop, the roasting process is stopped for light roast beans. During the roasting process the beans have changed color from green to yellow to a light cinnamon brown. The beans still have a bit of a sour or acidic taste; however, the sharp fruity flavor and origin is apparent. Many good quality beans are only lightly roasted.
The beans continue in their roasting process and start shrinking in size. After about 9 to 11 minutes the roasting is stopped. At this point the sugary flavors of the beans start to come out. Medium roast coffee is a bit sweeter with hints of milk chocolate. The coffee has a slight smokiness and the original beans bright flavor can still be tasted.
Dark Roast coffee takes about 12 to 13 minutes and the sugars have fully developed in the dark beans giving the coffee a rich deep chocolate caramel flavor with a hint of spiciness. It is more difficult to tell which part of the world or coffee region that dark roast beans come from as the smokiness and sugars of the bean have become more predominant.
Espresso Roast takes about 14 minutes and, at this point, the sugars in the espresso beans are starting to burn and caramelize. This produces a smokier bean and a smoky rich tasting espresso coffee.
Most of us drink coffee every day. Your preference may be the fruitier light roast coffee in the morning. Perhaps you prefer a medium roast with a subtle chocolate flavor. Many enjoy the rich spicy caramel dark roast or the classic smoky espresso. Whatever your pleasure, organic coffee certainly is not boring and there is a large variety of organic coffee beans to choose from. Have fun exploring!
Lisa Fox has a passion for food and beverage. After drinking coffee for many years, she decided to find out more about it and created a website. To find out more about Organic Coffee check out her personal site.
Personal URL: http://www.coffee-organic.com