There are two main types of coffee beans, Coffea Arabica and Coffea Robusta. Actually, they should be called coffee seeds, not beans, but most people call them coffee beans. Coffee beans are green before they go through processing.
Coffee beans get their different colors after they’re roasted. It’s also how they get flavored. During the process of roasting, the oils in the beans flavor the coffee. The color of the coffee beans will tell you if it’s a light or a dark roast. This signifies the length of time that the beans spent in the roasting process.
There are four basic types of roasts, from light roasted to dark roasted. As you can guess, the light roasted coffee beans did not go through the roasting process for the same length of time that dark roasts did. The lighter the roast of the coffee, the less bitterness the coffee flavor has. The length of time the beans spent in roasting is what you see on the labels on the outside of the bag or can of coffee that you purchase, the light, the medium, the medium dark and the dark.
In a light roast, because the process isn’t as long, the oils are not freed to the outer part of the bean. This makes the light roast less bitter than the other roasts. The medium roast, has a darker color and stronger taste. You still won’t have as much of the bitterness, because there’s not a lot of the oil to give it that bitter taste.
With a medium dark roast, the first thing that will catch your attention will be the color of the beans. The color will be noticeably darker than the light roast and slightly darker than the medium one. It also has a distinct bitterness. Coffee beans that are dark roasted no longer look brown, instead they have a black color. The oil on the bean is more noticeable right away. The taste of this coffee is very bitter. If you’ve ever had an espresso, it was made using these darker, bitter beans.
Because beans can vary even within their classifications, what one medium coffee tastes like doesn’t mean that another medium will taste exactly like it. So you may have to try several different varieties to figure out what pleases your taste the most. If you like to drink coffee that has a powerful taste and gives you that bitter flavor, then you want to go with the darkest roast.
You can buy coffee from all over the world. Different countries and regions will deliver coffee that has a unique taste. Even how the bean is process initially, picked by hand versus machine, can make a difference. Some coffee is labelled as blend, this means that the beans are brought together from more than one source. This can be an advantage, because the flavors are paired together to create a rich fullness in flavor.