The Ultimate Coffee Guide

Reviewed & edited by Lenny Terra -This blog is supported by its readers. If you purchase through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

If you’re a coffee-lover, then this blog post is for you!

Coffee is one of the most popular beverages in the world. It’s consumed by people all over the world and has different meanings to many cultures. But no matter what culture you come from or what your favorite beverage may be, some tips can make your cup of joe even better.

In this coffee guide, we explore 10 of the different factors that affect your cup of coffee. We cover everything from the type of coffee beans you should buy to the best way to store your ground coffee.

If you’re ready for some fantastic tips about making great coffee, then read on…

Contents show

Types of coffee

What are the different types of beans, blends, roasts, flavors, creamers, and sweeteners?

Types of beans.

Coffee beans

Coffee beans come from different parts of the world and have unique tastes. Some beans are bitter, and others have a sweeter taste. It’s also possible to mix different types of coffee to come up with something new and exciting!

There are many species of coffee beans, but we will focus on two: Arabica and Robusta. The difference between these types is not just their taste; it’s also what they look like and how much caffeine each one has in them.

Arabica beans are the most popular type of coffee bean since they have a less bitter taste. They also contain more caffeine than Robusta beans do, but not as much as other types like Excelsa or Liberica (from different parts of Africa). These species are harder to grow and produce smaller yields than Arabica beans do.

Robusta is the second most popular type of bean after Arabica, but it’s also known to have a bitter taste. Robustas are easier to grow than other types because they require less work since their yield is more extensive. They’re typically used in commercial coffee rather than homemade blends, though!

Types of Roasts

The difference between roasts is simply how long they are heated. The longer they’re heated, the darker the beans will become. The longer they’re heated, the more caffeine content is lost as well.

There are four different roasts: light roast, medium-light roast, medium roast, and dark roast.

Light roasts are the lightest and least bitter type of coffee you can drink. They also retain their caffeine content better than other types since they don’t spend as much time being heated up!

These beans take less time to prepare because they’re roasted for a shorter amount of time – between three and ten minutes at most – which makes them ideal if you like your cup quick and easy (and still tasty). 

Medium-light roasts take around twelve to fifteen minutes to be prepared, making them somewhere in the middle when it comes to strength compared to other coffees. 

These roast levels will typically have low acidity, too, so that means there’s no need for any extra sugar or milk with these!

Medium roasts are typically the most popular type of roast. These beans have a balanced taste and can be found at almost any grocery store around you. They’re heated for fifteen to twenty minutes, so they retain their caffeine content well but don’t have as much acidity in them either.

Dark roasts are the darkest type of roast and have a stronger flavor. They’re commonly found in specialty coffee shops since they take longer to prepare, at around twenty minutes or more.

This is also when their caffeine content has been reduced significantly, so these are typically not as popular with regular consumers unless you add some extra ingredients into them!

Darker coffees are usually used with cream, milk, sugar, etc., although some people drink them black.

Coffee Blends.

Coffee Blends 1

Blends are when one type of coffee is mixed with another to create a unique taste. There are many different types of coffee bean blends, but the most popular ones include:

  • Espresso Blend – made from a mixture of Arabica and Robusta beans for a balanced cup of coffee.
  • Breakfast blend – a mix of various light roasts to create an ideal cup first thing in the morning!
  • Colombian blend – a medium roast made from a mixture of Colombian beans.
  • House Blend – typically a medium roast that’s made from a mix of different types of beans.
  • French roast – a medium roast that’s been mixed with a dark roast for a stronger taste.
  • Decaf coffee – made from Arabica beans and has had their caffeine content removed through the process of decaffeination (which typically happens when they’re soaked in water or ethyl acetate to get rid of it).

Coffee flavors.

There are many different types of coffee flavors available, including:

  • Vanilla – typically a dark or espresso roast blended with vanilla flavor for added sweetness without the need for extra sugars!
  • Hazelnut – similar to vanilla but flavored with hazelnuts instead. This is another popular flavor since it’s sweeter than regular coffee and doesn’t need extra sugar!
  • Caramel – medium or dark roasts that have been flavored with caramelized sugars.
  • Irish Cream – a blend of cream, chocolate flavors, and alcohol to create an ideal drink for St Patrick’s Day (or other holidays too!)! 
  • Mocha – a dark roast that’s flavored with chocolate and a hint of coffee for the ultimate caffeine boost.
  • Cinnamon  typically a medium or dark roast blended with cinnamon flavor to create a unique taste!
  • Peppermint Mocha – similar to chocolate, but flavored with peppermint extract to make it ideal for the holidays (or even every day if you like to mix things up!)!
  • Pumpkin Spice – similar to cinnamon, but flavored with pumpkin spice instead. This is another popular flavor since it can be used during autumn or any other time of year, depending on your preference! 

Coffee creamers. 

There are many different types of coffee creamers available, including:

  • Milk 
  • Fat-free creamers – Made with a combination of water, hydrogenated vegetable oil, and corn syrup solids or other ingredients. They can also be referred to as non-dairy coffee creamers.
  • Almond milk creamer – Made from almond milk and sweeteners
  • Half & half – Half cream and half milk
  • Heavy Cream – Made from cow’s milk. 
  • Soy creamer – Made from soy milk
  • Coconut milk creamer – Made with coconut milk
  • Flavored creamers – Made with flavors such as vanilla, caramel, or hazelnut

Coffee sweeteners. 

There are many different types of coffee sweeteners available, including:

  • Natural sugar – typically made with cane sugar, brown sugar, or other natural sugars.
  • Artificial Sweetener – These sweeteners mimic the taste but without adding additional calories such as sucralose (Splenda), saccharin (Sweet’N Low), stevia extract, acesulfame potassium (Sunett, Sweet One).  
  • Sugar alcohols – also known as polyols, are not entirely absorbed by the body and can be somewhat laxative. Common sugar alcohol sweeteners include xylitol, sorbitol, maltitol, mannitol, erythritol, and isomalt.
  • Agave nectar – made from the agave plant, this sweetener is gaining popularity.
  • Honey – made from bees, honey can be used in coffee or as a sweetener.
  • Flavored sugar – add flavor to your sugar, such as cinnamon sugar, pumpkin spice sugar, etc. 

Benefits and adverse effects of drinking coffee.

Coffee has many health benefits and can be a “health food” if consumed in moderation. 

  • It’s known to boost brain power 1, metabolism 2, and even fight depression 3, and that’s just the beginning!
  • Drinking coffee is an excellent way for people who don’t usually drink caffeine or other stimulants to start getting their dose of daily energy.
  • Coffee can help suppress appetite 4 and make you burn more calories throughout the day 5.
  • A cup of black coffee has fewer than five calories, making it a guilt-free pleasure if consumed in moderation.
  • What about weight loss? Coffee is calorie-free, so there’s no reason it shouldn’t be included in your diet if you’re watching what you eat.
  • Coffee can boost certain neurotransmitters like dopamine and serotonin 6 that regulate mood—and even improve memory!
Benefits and adverse effects of drinking coffee

Coffee in excess has some adverse effects on the body and should be drunk in moderation to avoid these side effects.

  • For example, drinking too much coffee can lead to anxiety and make you feel jittery 7.
  • It could also increase acid reflux because it relaxes the sphincter between your stomach and esophagus, leading some people to experience heartburn or even more severe conditions like GERD (reflux) 8.
  • Lastly, coffee can be a diuretic in certain people 9, which means that it overcomes the body’s natural tendency to retain water. If consumed in excess, this may have an overall dehydrating effect on your system, so be sure not to drink too many cups!

The best method for brewing coffee.

There are many different methods for brewing coffee. Not all of them produce a good-tasting drink.

French press

A French press is made up of a cylindrical container with two fitted glass or plastic pieces; one flat disk on the bottom called the “base” and another rounded piece that fits over it like a lid, usually with holes in it to act as filters. The container and the disk are typically glass, while the plunger is a simple plastic rod with a handle on one end.

The French press has been around in some form or another since 1901, patented by Italian designer Attilio Calimani. It’s used to make coffee using coarsely ground beans steeped in water at the temperature of 92–95 °C (198–203 °F) for between four and six minutes, depending on desired strength.

The resulting coffee is robust in flavor, but it’s also highly caffeinated due to direct contact with hot water during brewing. It has a gritty texture because that’s what you get when you push the grounds through an extremely fine mesh.

To make your own great-tasting pot of joe at home using this method:

Grab yourself a good quality coarsely ground coffee that should have a dark color.

The burr grinder is best for getting consistent grinds but isn’t necessary to get started. Use arabica beans to avoid bitterness, if possible.

Scoop out about two tablespoons of the grounds per every four ounces of water you plan to use and place them in the glass press as marked on your French-press brewer’s instructions, which will vary depending on size. 

Pour hot water over the top until it reaches the top of the grounds (about two ounces per every four ounces), which will act as a pre-infusion stage to “wake up” your coffee.

Give it about 30 seconds for this step, then stir the mixture with a spoon or chopstick once before putting on the lid and pressing down gently but firmly. Take care not to just push the plunger down without pressing it against something solid, or you might break your glass!

Let steep for four minutes before slowly pushing the plunger to the bottom, then pour and enjoy.

Measure how much you want to brew with either grams or ounces, depending on which scale you have available.

Add roughly two tablespoons (more or less) of ground coffee per every six ounces of water that’s being used.

Percolator

A percolator is a type of pot that makes coffee by continually cycling the boiling or nearly-boiling pressurized water through the ground coffee until it reaches sufficient strength. This method is popular with campers and outdoors enthusiasts due to its mobility, although you have to be careful not to burn your brew!

To make a great-tasting cup of coffee using this method, simply place the desired amount of ground beans into your percolator’s basket (usually marked) and slowly pour boiling water over them until it reaches about half an inch from the top.

Put on the lid but don’t seal it up all the way; allow for a small opening so that steam can escape while also preventing too much heat from escaping. This will take roughly five to ten minutes, depending on how hot your burner is going, so keep an eye on it. 

Once the coffee starts to perk, remove from heat and enjoy. For a stronger cup of joe, simply add more grounds or let that steep for longer before removing it from the burner!

Drip Machine / Filtered Coffee Brewer

The Filtered Coffee Brewer is probably what most people picture in their heads whenever someone says “coffee machine” or “coffee maker.” It’s also the most popular and easiest way to make a decent cup of black coffee on your own, plus it takes up less space than some other options.

To start this method off right: grind out enough beans for about six ounces using whatever type of grinder you have (burr is best). Pour them into the top compartment marked with that number or measure out roughly two tablespoons per every four ounces of water being used. 

Place a paper filter in the removable basket underneath before pouring boiled water all over those grounds; once done, put on the lid but don’t seal it completely (again, allow room for steam). Depending on what machine you use, this could take anywhere from three to ten minutes.

Once it’s finished, remove the filter and enjoy!

Electric Coffee Maker / Drip Machine With Grinder Built In

If you like the idea of an electric coffee machine but don’t want to bother with buying beans, grinding them yourself, and dealing with filters, the Drip Machine With Grinder Built In is an excellent middle ground.

Because it has both its own grinder and drip-brewing capabilities in one unit, all you need to do is measure out how much water you’re using (measurements are usually on either side of the grounds container) before pouring that into the top compartment marked “grinds.” 

Pour your desired amount of beans into the lower part labeled “grounds”; then just press start! Depending on your model’s settings, it should take about five minutes for roughly twelve ounces’ worth. Enjoy right away while hot.

Espresso machine

An espresso maker is a popular choice for those who want to make more than just coffee: cappuccino, macchiato, Americanos, and lattes are all possible with this type of machine.

Espresso machines work by forcing pressurized water through finely-ground beans at extremely high temperatures; the result is a super-concentrated liquid that packs quite the punch!

To start making espresso shots using one of these machines, place your desired amount of pre-measured grounds into the portafilter (usually marked) before tamping them down to create an even surface. 

Once everything’s ready, turn up the heat and watch as those grounds are pushed into a concentrated liquid by hot steam under pressure! This should take about twenty seconds or so, depending on how powerful your espresso maker is. Enjoy straight away while still warm if possible; otherwise, transfer to another container first before drinking at room temperature.

Pod Coffee Maker

Pod Coffee Makers are straightforward to use but are also wasteful due to the disposable nature of K-Cups and other pod types.

These machines work by placing pre-portioned plastic containers (or pods) filled with ground beans into an area at the top before sealing itself shut as soon as you press start. 

Once sealed, hot water is pushed through those grounds using high pressure until they’re forced out through a tiny hole in that same compartment! This should take about fifteen seconds, if not less, depending on how much liquid your maker spits out every time.

Unlike some other methods outlined here, coffee pods require little work on your part: just add water or milk of choice before pressing a button! You can also get espresso-based drinks from these; just make sure to follow the instructions on any pods you buy. 

Tips for storing your coffee correctly.

storing your coffee

You should store your coffee beans in an airtight container that’s kept away from light, heat, and moisture.

It’s also recommended to use your beans within two weeks of opening them for optimum freshness.

For the best taste, try grinding beans yourself just before brewing instead of pre-grinding beforehand! This is especially important if you’re using a manual device with no built-in grinder like French presses or percolators. 

Do not freeze coffee to extend its shelf life; this can create excess moisture even when sealed up inside an airtight container, affecting quality over time by degrading it faster than usual.  

Coffee doesn’t go bad; rather, the flavor and aroma diminish as time goes on, which is why it’s essential to store correctly.

Coffee pods are extremely easy to use but are also wasteful due to the disposable nature of K-Cups and other pod types. To store your K-cups properly, make sure to use an airtight container and keep it away from light, heat, moisture.

Coffee etiquette.

Coffee is a drink that anyone of any age can enjoy at any time in nearly any situation, but there are still some social guidelines to follow.

  • In general, it’s polite always to say yes when someone offers you coffee; however, you can politely decline if you’re not in the mood or simply don’t want any.
  • If coffee is served with breakfast pastries like croissants, it’s considered polite to accept at least one pastry even if you won’t eat all of them! It’s also common for guests to be offered a second cup of coffee sometime later in the day, even if they’ve already had one.
  • When pouring for others at the table, don’t serve yourself until everyone else has been helped first;
  • If someone is making coffee for themselves, do not interrupt them or offer help. It’s a good idea to stand back and give the person some space until they’re finished brewing their drink! 
  • It’s also important to drink responsibly when consuming any caffeinated beverages since these can affect your physical and mental state in different ways depending on how much caffeine you consume during each sitting.  Generally speaking, though, people tend to reach for decaf after dinner or before bed while taking regular coffee early into the day or around lunchtime.  
  • According to an old Italian tradition, you should swig the first shot of espresso with no sugar or milk before returning it. This is done to cleanse your palate and make sure that everything tastes as intended! Then, go ahead and add whatever sweetener or cream you want afterward for a better-tasting cup of coffee. 
  • Never reheat your cup of joe more than once because this will cause it to lose its flavor due to chemical changes that occur when exposed repeatedly to heat.
  • Never let your coffee sit too long before drinking it.
  • Only add flavored syrups or creamers after brewing instead of mixing flavors beforehand so you won’t over-extract those beans’ natural flavors!    
  • When serving coffee at home during social gatherings like dinner parties, always remember to keep a separate pot for decaf drinkers.
  • You should also provide milk and sugar in small containers or on a tray so guests can add their preferred amount to suit their taste without having to wait too long between refills.
  • If you’re entertaining at work, it’s best not to serve coffee from any kind of carafe because this tends to leave the liquid tasting stale compared with freshly brewed options! Instead, consider getting an espresso machine if possible or just brew fresh pots when they’re needed instead of leaving them open overnight. 
  • Everyone can enjoy their own mug while using communal brewing methods; just make sure to take turns with who gets first dibs on beverages when doing this type of drink service so as not to cause contention among guests.    
  • If you are traveling, the best way to learn proper etiquette is by asking locals around your area; this will make you feel more welcomed while also giving you insight on what not to do when drinking coffee!   

Coffee hacks.

Coffee is a beloved drink among many people worldwide, but there are still some hacks to make it even better.

  • The first hack is always to use the right amount of coffee. Measurements vary based on how strong you want your cup of joe, but using one tablespoon for every six ounces will give you a good starting point. If that’s not quite strong enough, just add an additional tablespoon until you find the perfect flavor!
  • Using less than two tablespoons per six-ounce glass gives a pleasantly balanced taste; adding more won’t make it any stronger since measurements vary based on personal preferences.
  • Once you have reached the perfect amount of coffee, make sure always to use filtered water. It may seem like a no-brainer, but not all water is created equal, and going with clean tap water can leave your cup tasting flat!
  • Avoid over-steeping or making your drink too bitter by removing it from heat before it has finished brewing.
  • Putting hot sauce into your cup might sound strange at first, but if you enjoy spicy foods, then you should give this hack a shot because it works well with coffee too. As long as you don’t add more than half a teaspoon six ounces of liquid, though, you should be fine.
  • Putting salt into your cup is another strange hack, but it can make the flavor of coffee more complex and enjoyable. This one might take some trial and error to figure out how much you like in every six ounces, though, because enough for a single person could taste totally different than what would work best for multiple people sharing one pot together. To use this method, simply add about ¼ teaspoon per every four ounces of water used. Remember that adding too much will ruin an entire batch, so if you aren’t sure, then start small first!
  • To get the most out of your morning cup, you’ll want to start with quality beans. Many people assume that they can buy cheap coffee at a grocery store, and it will still be good as long as it is fresh, but this isn’t true! You have to think about all factors – from where the beans were grown to where they were roasted and more – for them to be top quality.

Iced Coffee.

Iced Coffee

Most people love their coffee hot, but there are plenty of others who prefer it iced.

If you’re looking to make your own version at home, the best way is by using cold water and allowing that mixture to cool in the refrigerator overnight! This will help trap all those delicate flavors inside while preventing them from being watered down when poured over ice later on. Don’t skip this step before serving if possible.

To get an adequately chilled beverage without having to wait for hours, add two tablespoons per every six ounces of room-temperature liquid into a sealed bottle or jar with about an ounce of simple syrup for sweetness once cooled completely; shake well until evenly mixed! If necessary, feel free to substitute regular sugar, depending on your preferences.

If you’re looking for an even sweeter taste, then adding a teaspoon of vanilla extract to the mixture before shaking will take this drink over the top! You can also add other spices or flavorings into coffee if desired, but just be aware that these may not always work out well depending on who is drinking it, so don’t get too creative without testing first!   

Interesting facts about coffee.

There are plenty of interesting facts about coffee that may surprise you, and the first example is actually how much it costs to produce.

  • While most people assume this would be a lot since so many countries rely on coffee production for their economies, in reality, the cost only averages out to around $0.60 per pound! The reason why prices can sometimes get so high depends mostly on market speculation. If demand goes up, farmers will charge more money just like any other producer trying to sell items at a higher price than usual based on current trends alone.   
  • Another surprising fact is that over half of all Americans drink coffee every day, which shows just how popular among even non-coffee drinkers it has become lately.
  • Most people are familiar with the taste of typical blends, but there are hundreds more that may be even better for those who want to try something new.
  • Coffee is the second most traded commodity globally, with only crude oil trading more than it!
  • The biggest coffee producers in the world are Brazil and Vietnam, with Colombia coming in third. These three countries alone produce over half of all coffee that is consumed regularly worldwide!   
  • The term “cup o’ joe” actually originated in World War I when alcohol was banned by Secretary of the Navy Josephus “Joe” Daniels. Since soldiers were no longer allowed to drink alcohol during breakfast, they started referring to their morning coffee instead as a “cup o’ Joe,” and this term has been in widespread use ever since.
  • Coffee beans are actually seeds of berries; that’s why you get such lovely flavors from roasting each batch before grinding into your morning cup!
  • For plants, caffeine is a natural pesticide that plants produce to keep themselves protected from insects who want to eat them, so when they are ingested, their brain becomes unable to reset its internal clock properly.   

Must-try coffees from around the world.

Coffee is one of the most popular drinks in America today, but that doesn’t mean you can’t try something new!

One great example to start with are Turkish coffees which typically contain cardamom, an ingredient that works great with this particular flavor profile.

You can also try coffees from Yemen, known for their solid and smoky flavors due to the roasting process involved, so if you like a more subtle taste, these may not be for you!

Coffee Countries

Ethiopian varieties tend to bring out notes of fruit and citrus instead, making them an excellent choice for those who prefer to stick with lighter beverage options.

If you are looking for something with a bit more flavor, then Vietnamese coffees may be your best choice. These beverages often contain notes of cinnamon and nutmeg, making them perfect for the holidays!

You can also try Guatemalan or Colombian brews for a more earthy and nutty taste that some people adore.

Coffee from India often brings out notes of vanilla, making it great for those who want to try something new without going too far outside the box.  

If you’re a fan of dark roasts, then the French roast is an excellent choice that provides a lot more flavor than regular coffee, but it’s still smooth enough to drink without being overpowering.

For those who prefer more robust flavors in general, Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee will be perfect for your tastes because its unique smoky undertones provide something extraordinary; there’s no other way to describe it!   

Try the Kona Gold Coffee from Hawaii for an even richer taste because this is an excellent choice for those who want to taste their coffee rather than just drink it in the morning.

Lastly, there’s Kopi Luwak from Indonesia, which is made from coffee beans that have been eaten by a civet and then passed through its digestive system. This process allows for the beans to become much smoother than they otherwise would be, so if you don’t mind trying something truly unique, this may just be your new favorite option!

FAQs about coffee.

What is the difference between light roast and dark roast?

A dark roast is roasted for a longer time, resulting in a strong, rich flavor.

Is there such thing as flavored coffee?

Yes! Flavored coffees have been around since the days of colonial America, where many people would drink their coffee hot and sweetened with various spices like cinnamon or nutmeg. Today, flavored coffees are just as popular but come in more varieties, including vanilla, hazelnut, chocolate, etc.

Why does my brewed cup taste weak even though I used fresh beans and made it using the proper water to bean ratio?

There are several reasons why your cup might taste weak. If you use a regular grind, it can be due to the fact that bleached filters tend to absorb more of the oils from coffee beans when brewing, so if you have been using bleached filters up until now and want stronger tasting coffee in the future, try switching over to unbleached filters for a richer flavor.

Another reason may be that most people don’t know how much ground coffee is required per each cup they brew, ultimately affecting its strength/flavor intensity.

For instance, if you’re making 12 ounces of joe but only filling half your cup with water, then this means there’s too much ground coffee being used (this ratio should typically be one tablespoon for every six fluid ounces of water).

What temperature should I brew at?

The ideal brewing temperature for coffee is between 195°F and 205°F. If you don’t have a thermometer to measure the temperature, just make sure it’s hot enough so that steam can be produced but not too much where your cup will burn your taste buds off because yes – this happens!

What is cold-brewed iced coffee? Is it better than hot brewed or regular iced coffee?

Cold-brewed iced coffee utilizes four times more ground-up beans to extract flavor from less liquid resulting in an intensely flavored drink that can be diluted over ice without losing its integrity. This method also allows what we call “coffee solids” (the natural oils found in the fresh-roasted whole bean) to remain intact, which creates a smoother tasting beverage versus traditional.

What are some differences between espresso and drip coffee?

Espresso contains about half the caffeine as regular brewed coffee, but it’s known for its strong taste. Drip or filter coffee is more common than espresso because anyone can make it at home by pouring hot water over ground beans held in paper filters.

How long does roasted coffee last before it goes bad?

Coffee beans should be used within two weeks of roasting to ensure quality and freshness.

Why does my cup of brewed coffee taste bitter and acidic?

When coffee is brewed too hot, it can result in a bitter and acidic taste which isn’t ideal for most people. The best way to avoid this from happening is to make sure you’re brewing at the right temperature (between 195°F and 205°F)

How long does brewed coffee last?

Brewed coffee will typically stay fresh within four hours of being made as long as there’s no heat involved, like pouring boiling water into a ceramic mug or using microwaves. To keep your cup tasting great longer than that, we recommend transferring leftover brew into an insulated container with a lid that seals tightly so air doesn’t have any access to getting inside.

Is it bad to reheat coffee after you make it?

Coffee can be reheated, but it might not taste as good as when it was initially brewed. When you microwave your cup of joe, the water heats unevenly, and this will cause a loss of flavor (and nutrients) that were present before microwaving occurred, so we recommend just making one fresh pot instead!

Is a dark roast better than a light roast?

Light roast has a slightly acidic taste that can be used when you’re in the mood for something with more flavor. In contrast, dark roasts (which are roasted longer) tend to have less acidity and lend themselves well to iced coffee because they don’t get diluted as quickly. However, it’s important not to confuse “dark roast” with “burnt,” which is terrible, so find out what your preferences are and stick to them!

What does high altitude mean in reference to coffee beans?

When coffee beans are grown at a high altitude, the climate is typically drier and cooler, which causes less caffeine to appear in the plant naturally. This means that while you’re getting more flavor from your cup of joe, it’s going to have a lower amount of caffeine than if it were produced somewhere like Brazil, where there’s plenty of rainforest humidity present.

FAQ Coffee

What does Grade A vs. Grade B mean?

Grade A refers to light roasts, whereas grade B has bolder flavors and can be used when making dark roasts or espresso-based drinks.

How do you choose the right coffee machine?

When choosing a new coffee machine, consider what your needs are. Do you want to have more control over how much water is being used, or would you prefer an automated approach, so it’s all done for you? Think about whether or not you need options like making specialty drinks with steam or frothed milk because some machines can’t accommodate these special requests.

What does organic mean in reference to coffee beans?

Organic means that there were no pesticides, herbicides, fungicide sprays present during harvesting, which usually results in better tasting beans since chemicals haven’t tainted them. Organic doesn’t necessarily mean flavorful, however, but if this matters to you, make sure to look for the organic label before you make a purchase!

Can I grind my own coffee beans at home?

Yes, definitely! Grinding your own beans right before brewing ensures optimal freshness levels, so it’s always best to experiment until you find out what works best for your body/tastes. You can use a grinder that has preset options or even just does it manually if you have the patience!

Is instant coffee bad for me? 

Instant coffee is made through a process where the water is pushed through ground-up beans, which result in smaller particles that have already been brewed. While these are easy to make, it can be argued that they somewhat lack when compared with full-bodied flavors of freshly ground beans, so don’t expect instant varieties to give you all the same benefits as their non-instant counterparts!

What do K cups vs. pods mean?

K cups and pods both refer to disposable containers that hold pre-measured amounts of fresh grounds for brewing. However, K cups are often used at home, while pods tend to be reserved more for office/commercial use because they require specific machines explicitly designed for them rather than being compatible with virtually every brewer available on the market.

Can I add sugar/milk into my cup before adding water?

This is a personal preference, and it’s best to try both ways (with milk and without) before coming to any conclusion about which option you prefer.

How do I make my coffee stronger?

If you want more caffeine or bolder flavors from your cup of coffee without changing beans/roasts, try increasing the number of grounds being used instead. Just keep an eye on how much is added to each brew because too much can result in a super bitter cup!

What does “full city” mean in reference to coffee beans?

Full city is used when grading the flavor of your beans and refers to medium-bodied roasts which are balanced but with slightly more acidity than dark roasts. This makes them ideal for use in most espresso machines because they’re not too strong or weak. It’s easier to get good results after just one shot rather than having multiple back-to-back shots that end up tasting either too light/bitter or burnt/overly acidic!

What does “fair trade” mean in reference to coffee beans?

Fair Trade means that a minimum price was paid for the beans and not harvested by children or exploited citizens. Usually, these are used in high-quality coffees, so it’s essential to look at your options carefully before making any purchases!

Conclusion

We’ve covered a lot of ground in this ultimate coffee guide.

Now, it’s your turn to comment and share what you learned with us! Did we miss anything? What else would you like to know about the world of coffee?

Let’s keep the conversation going by sharing our thoughts on any aspect of coffee that interests you.

Author

  • Matthew Mansour is a professional life coach, fitness trainer, health coach, a blogger with over 800 articles published to date. He enjoys reading and researching books that are reflective of the nature of who we are as humans, understanding the complexity of our minds, and using it as an advantage to propel us forward in life. He is a self-help enthusiast and he is not ashamed about it! He’s always looking for his next fix of inspiration, motivation, insight, and wisdom from those who have been there before him! He also does a lot of courses and research on the latest and greatest in the area of self-help, life coaching, and health. He likes to share his discoveries with anyone who is interested in listening! His personal goal is to help people achieve great results in their lives, that is why he also has a blog about self-improvement. He loves animals and he currently lives in New Jersey with his loving wife and his recently born child.

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