Myths About Coffee Storage
There are some people who keep red wine in the fridge…there are other people, the more obsessive types, that will search for every possible piece of information on how to store wine properly before attempting to..
We like the obsessive types because we know how important coffee storage is. So what do you do with the hundreds of grams of gourmet coffee you just bought? Ask that question in any group and at least one person will insist that the only place to store good coffee is in the freezer. Others will tell you to leave it vacuum sealed in the specially designed container in which it was bought. Someone might suggest you keep it in a glass container. There’s always one who will tell you that it really doesn’t matter at all. The truth is that each of those methods of coffee storage is correct, depending on the situation and environment you are in.
Let’s be upfront and honest, if you’ve bought a big can of Nescafe or Maxwell House instant coffee, you might as well flick pages and/or sites right about here. Mass-produced and marketed commercial varieties of coffee are intended to be consumed quickly, with as easy access as possible- hence the screw top lids – and are priced inexpensively. The coffee beans we are talking about are intended to bring the maximum amount of flavour to your coffee cup.
If you’re a coffee enthusiast, your daily grind matters dearly to you. Whether or not you’re getting the most out of your caffeine fix is an important daily point of consideration. Taste, texture and colour can all be affected by a number of factors. One of the most crucial influences on the quality of your coffee is how it is stored.
Here’s some more useful information and advice on the matter.
Why Is Coffee Storage So Important?
Coffee beans, as you know them and buy them, are dark brown in colour and dry in texture. They appear to be rather life-less. It’s almost hard to believe that they were once cherry red and extracted from a living plant. Therefore, like all organic products, they do expire. Like most other living products, proper storage methods and practice does help to preserve flavour and increase shelf life.
If a coffee bean were to be put under the microscope and examined, you would see that they actually consist of a mixture of oils and chemicals that give the bean its distinctive flavour. The oils and chemicals are released during the roasting process. Once exposed to the air they deteriorate rapidly. Grinding the coffee beans speeds up the flavor loss even more. Because of the various oil types and characteristics, there are different methods of coffee storage that are best for the coffee at the different stages of the roasting and brewing process.
The best cup of coffee is one that is brewed within two weeks of roasting, and immediately after grinding. In fact, coffee reaches its peak in flavour ratings at about 48 hours after roasting. For the average coffee connoisseur, that’s quite a tight schedule to meet, unless you’re one of those rare few that roasts your own. That’s why coffee storage matters. Here are some tips on coffee buying and coffee storage that will help ensure that you get a great tasting and fresh cup of coffee every time.
Coffee Buying For Proper Storage Tips
- If possible, buy your coffee from a local roaster who will tell you when the coffee was roasted. Then you know that you’re starting with fresh coffee.
- Buy coffee from a trustworthy supplier who sells known and trusted brands of coffee.
- Buy coffee in vacuum sealed bags or cans.
- Beware of those self serve coffee bean displays with endless varieties of coffee beans and flavours. The bins allow air to ruin the coffee beans. You also have no idea how long the beans have been standing there for.
- Don’t buy any more than two weeks supply of coffee at a time. After two weeks, even freshly roasted coffee begins to lose its flavour.
Coffee Storage Tips
Air and moisture are the two factors that determine a good cup of coffee from a bad one. Once air and moisture reach the bean, your time is limited. So get storing properly.
- Don’t store ground coffee.
- Buy whole beans of coffee and grind them as you need them.
- If you do buy ground coffee, store it at room temperature in an airtight container after it’s been opened.
- Ceramic canisters with a vacuum seal are also good.
- Glass jars are excellent because they do not allow air or moisture to enter, do not retain the odours of the oil and are conveniently see-through.
- If you do choose glass, make sure the jar is kept right away from any sunlight, direct or indirect.
- Store up to a one week supply of whole coffee beans in an airtight canister at room temperature.
- Store the rest of your supply in the freezer.
Coffee Storage In The Freezer Tips
- Divide your supply into small portions that can be used over a short period of time.
- Put the beans in an airtight canister.
- Alternately, put the beans in a zip-seal plastic storage back.
- Make sure you get all the air out before sealing the bag.
- Wrap the bag in one or two layers of plastic wrap followed by a layer of aluminium.
- Once you take the canister or package out of the freezer, don’t put it back in.
- Refreezing coffee dehydrates it further and accelerates the perishing process