The Importance of Tamping Pressure

You’re a barista. Maybe at home, or maybe you’ve been working in a shop, and you hear all sorts of theories about how to tamp your espresso, ultimately deciding that how you tamp, doesn’t really matter that much. I’m here to tell you, that it matters a great deal, and the reason is not among the most popular theories! Read more

Do You Buy Ground Coffee?

Your coffee-loving friends have already told you that it’s a bad idea to buy ground coffee. They say it’s not as fresh, that ground coffee goes stale quickly. But hey, you’ve been drinking coffee for years, buying it already ground, and you’ve been perfectly happy with it, right? Read more

What is Acidity in Coffee?

I often have people ask me for coffee recommendations and they tend to say one of two things, either “I like dark roasts” or “I like coffee that doesn’t have acidity”. As a roaster, I find this really interesting because the current trend of “Third Wave” coffee is all about emphasizing the uniqueness of coffee origins by roasting light and highlighting the characteristic acidity in coffee.
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Applying the Right Heat for the Bean

In coffee roasting, there isn’t a single formula or method that you can call “tried and true”. The variables are numerous, and knowing how to address each variety of coffee is what makes a roastmaster. In How Roasting Style Changes the Flavor of Coffee, I discussed how a faster application of heat can lead to sweeter flavors with more clarity. While this might be desirable for some varieties of coffees, for others it can ruin them!
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