September 30

The Different Coffee Roast Levels



When drinking coffee, it is important to understand how the different coffee roast levels affect the flavor of the coffee. By understanding what each type of roast does to your coffee, you will be able to choose the best flavor and caffeine content for your coffee. In this article, we will discuss different types of roasting methods and how they affect the flavor of coffee.

Light Roast

Light roast is the lightest roasting time creates a small amount of acid. The coffee produced with this light roast level is generally described as having mild flavors. This roast level will make a light brown cup of coffee.

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Medium Roast

Medium roast is the medium roast offers greater acidity than the light brown. The beans used for this level of roast will often refer to Italian or French roast. Medium roasting time creates a medium brown color, but does not often provide a lot of flavor. Many people will use the medium roast for espresso or drip coffee. Many home baristas will often use this medium roast level for espresso.

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Dark Roast

Dark roast is the darkness of the cup of coffee produced depends on what type of roast was used. The longer the roast time, the deeper the shade of the beverage. A longer roast time often means a darker cup. City and espresso roasts are classified as a dark roast.

Second Crack The second crack of your cup will offer a smoky, peppery taste to the coffee. It is actually the result of the longer roasting process. The coffee gets to the darker shades of brown during the second crack. This does not mean the coffee loses its flavor. It just means that the flavors have been sealed inside and have a unique aroma. It is this very characteristic that makes a good espresso.

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Full Roast

The full roast coffees are the darkest and oily. It is considered by many to be the ultimate in coffee roasting. It gives the absolute best taste. It also has the most aroma value. Many espresso roasters will only use the first crack of their machine while others will use both.

Flat Rate One of the most popular options among home coffee roasters is the flat roast. This is a very light roast that tends to leave the natural aroma of the beans behind. There is not as much acidity as there is with the full roast which helps to bring out more of the natural flavors. It offers a light, clean taste that is great for when you want a quick cup of coffee or are in a hurry. If you like it darker, the flat roast will give you that lighter cup of Joe.

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General Coffee Roast Levels

Medium: These are mild and full-bodied roasts. They start off at around eighty degrees Fahrenheit. These are the lowest roasts available and provide the most balanced combination of flavor from the beans and the roasting process. The flavors are light and fruity or piney. Generally, medium roasts sit on the bottom of a pot and continue to boil until the water begins to boil.

Dark: These roast levels are somewhere between dark brown and medium brown. Roasting levels peak at around 140 degrees Fahrenheit and then begin a gradual decrease. The darker roasts provide a deeper, fuller taste with a light bitterness that often comes from the acidity of the bean.

Medium-Light: These are considered the beginner’s cup of Joe. These are the perfect cup of coffee for those who don’t want to go overboard with the roasting process. The temperature roast continues all the way to the end of the brewing process but maintains some of the original flavors of the coffee bean. The coffee bean flavor remains intact. However, it is not as rich as the medium roast.

Full: This is one of the highest recommended roast levels for coffee roasts. Roasting for this level includes everything that was just discussed, but also adds an additional 45 degrees to the temperature of the water. The bean flavor is fully restored and sometimes, it is even better than light or medium roasts. Many people consider full coffee roasts to be rich and robust. Some even consider it to be perfect for tea and other beverages.

Extra Light: The lightest of all the roasting temperatures. It is often referred to as a blonde roast. Generally, beans in this category are not allowed to heat up to the proper degree for maximum flavor. At most, they are allowed to start around charcoal level. When taken outside, they are often referred to as Kona. Some people consider this light roast to be medium in flavor.




coffee, coffee beans, coffee roasts, roast, roast level

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