Coffee tastes best when it’s FRESH. Buying in bulk may be smart for laundry soap, but both your coffee and your cream are better if you purchase only a couple week’s worth at a time. Buying only as much coffee as you need, more frequently, will give you consistently good flavor.
Coffee is 97% water, so if your water tastes bad, your coffee will taste bad. Use bottled or filtered water. Also, it’s best to store brewed coffee in a thermal carafe if you won’t be pouring it all right away. Leaving it on the burner will result in a syrupy, cooked flavor.
As for which coffee makers do the best job: “Pour over” brewers such as Bodum’s Santos brewer (visit our Gifts & Custom Coffees Page to order this brewer) produce the best, most consistent coffee. Standard drip makers vary in quality, but most produce a decent cup of coffee. French presses are generally good, but be sure to grind your coffee coarsely or you’ll end up drinking grounds. Old-school percolators produce the worst results -all the acids and bitter taste are washed out of the beans and into your cup.
Buying whole bean coffee and fresh-grinding your own beans will always produce a fresher taste than pre-ground. However, a poor quality home grinder can ruin any of that benefit. A good quality coffee grinder is essential at most coffee drinker’s houses, and usually gets more use than the toaster.
Unless you are making espresso or using a French press, grind your coffee for “drip” or “automatic” (medium grind). If you are grinding your own coffee, be sure not to use the powdered coffee that builds up around the side of your grinder. The powder will clog your coffee filter and produce a bitter taste. Blade grinders tend to produce a lot of powder. We recommend the Baratza Encore Conical Burr Coffee Grinder for long life and less powder.
The best way to store your coffee is in an airtight container in the freezer. With the Bean Forge’s convenient zip-lock bags, you can take out what you need and return the bag to the freezer. Our flavor-lock valves allow the gases produced by fresh-roasted coffee to escape, while keeping oxygen out. We recommend buying your coffee as whole bean and grinding it as you need it. Whole bean coffee will stay fresh in the freezer for 3-4 weeks. Ground coffee will go stale in 3-4 days. Did you know that coffee must be stale before it can be packaged in an airtight container without a degassing valve? Otherwise the container would explode. Now you know why canned coffee has little or no flavor.
How much coffee should I buy?
For the freshest possible coffee, we recommend stocking two weeks worth. How much is that to you? Consider this: Our 14 oz. bag will make 7 average coffee maker sized (10 cup) pots. This is based on using one tablespoon per cup. If you drink a pot per day, two14 oz. bags is a good two-week order. If you use more than one pot per day, prepare coffee for guests, or like your coffee stronger, you may want to order more. If you’d like to always have fresh coffee on hand without ever having to leave the house, the Bean Forge’s subscription service can automatically ship any coffees to your door on any schedule you desire. Just select the subscription options when placing your order.