Just like any other work of art, roasting coffee takes time & careful attention to detail. Therefore, creating an excellent cup of joe starts way before the brewing method; it begins with roasting. In order to conserve the freshness & quality of well-roasted coffee beans, until they become the sweet nectar that is coffee, there are several helpful guidelines to go by.
1-- Buy Fresh Beans!
This is probably the most important part of brewing a good cup of coffee at home. It might seem time-efficient to buy a bean supply that will last for the next 6 months, but this won’t help to produce an enjoyable cup in the slightest bit. However, it’s not necessary to purchase a new bag of beans every day either. Coffee beans will usually stay fresh for 2 weeks after being roasted. Just like any other food, coffee beans can get stale if not used soon enough.
2-- Store whole beans, not ground.
Immediately after grinding coffee beans, they start oxidizing. This causes gradual loss of flavor. Therefore, in order to get the most natural flavor out of beans, & to prevent them from becoming stale, they need to be ground right before brewing.
3-- Store beans in a clean, airtight container.
Some beans come in a resealable bag with a firm seal, others come in a more permeable bag. In this case, transferring beans to an airtight container is the way to go. This can be as easy as using a recyclable container that something else came in or a state of the art Airscape storage container. Make sure the container is clean, or residual smells could affect the flavor of the beans.
4-- Store beans in a cool, dark place.
Unlike the coffee plant, coffee beans do not need to be in sunshine, nor do we want “cool beans!”, as mom might say, so don’t store them in the refrigerator either! A cupboard always works well for storing beans.