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Coffee Basics

Are you new to coffee or would you like to try a little bit of everything? At brazibeans, we believe that coffee is a way of life and the best way to find out what best suits your taste is to try many different ones! Besides being our ritual drink to start off the day, coffee brings people together for conversations, catch-ups and get-togethers. In this guide, we share with you some coffee basics every coffee lover needs to know.

Types of Coffee Beans

Even if you are new to coffee, you may have realized that different coffee beans produce a distinct taste, aroma and flavor. Below is a list of some of the most common coffee beans:

  • Arabica: The most popular yet most expensive variety of coffee, Arabica trees derive their name from the region of their popularity. Arabica trees are native to Ethiopia and are vulnerable to disease, which is one reason for their price point. Arabica coffee has the lightest taste and highest acidity of any coffee bean.
  • Liberica: Liberica beans can be identified based on their size, which is larger than other types of coffee beans. No two beans have the same shape, and coffee from Liberica beans are full bodied. Pure Liberica is hard to find as many trees today are some form of hybrid.
  • Robusta
  • Excelsa
  • … and many others!

How to Measure Coffee

You may be wondering how to measure coffee if you are new to coffee beans. The truth is that all coffees have a different mass, and this is partly to do with the way they are roasted. When coffee is roasted, it loses moisture, causing the beans to weigh up to 20% less than before they were roasted. Therefore, the darker the coffee, the lower the moisture content will be.

In order to calculate a brew ratio, you can either work forwards by deciding how much coffee you want to use or backwards by deciding how much coffee you want to end up with. A common coffee brew ratio is 1:15, or 1 part coffee to 15 parts of water. Let’s say you want a 300ml cup of coffee. To determine how much coffee you need, simply divide 300 by 15 to get 20g of coffee.

How to Store Coffee

To preserve the flavor of your coffee beans, proper storage is essential. To this end, you will want to keep them away from air, moisture, light and heat. Specialty packages that coffee comes in usually have a gas-release valve that will let out gas without letting air in.  On top of that, you may want to consider getting opaque airtight containers so that your coffee beans do not come into contact with direct sunlight. Store this container in a dark and cool place, avoiding spots of direct sunlight and near heat sources such as the microwave.

Another important tip to remember is to buy coffee in small batches. The reason for this is because coffee starts to lose its freshness upon coming into contact with air.  To ensure as fresh a batch as possible, you will want to restock only when your current batch is almost all gone. If you buy in bulk, you may choose to divide up your coffee into several smaller containers to maintain freshness.