The roast date is a very important piece of information for everyone involved. Firstly, knowing how recently it was roasted gives you the information you need to enjoy the coffee at its best. Unlike most things, fresh is NOT best. Due to nature of the coffee roasting process, CO2 builds up inside the bean as the sugars caramelise, and this trapped gas will cause an unpleasant salty taste as well as making the extraction process less uniform and consistent. In general, coffee should be rested before brewing to allow this gas to escape. We find coffee is at its best between 2 – 5 weeks after the roast date, which maximises CO2 release and yet still has all the freshness of desirable coffee solubles. If you simply can’t wait so long to get started with your delicious coffee, then pre-grinding the coffee up to 24 hours before brewing can expedite the de-gassing process, as can ‘blooming’ coffee in filter brewing, or ‘pre-infusing’ your espresso shots. You coffee never goes off, but there is a noticeable degradation of the coffee’s taste beyond the 7 week mark, and it tends to become stale after 6 months. If you wish to keep coffee beyond this period, freezing it in an air-tight container can slow down this process.
Knowing the roast date is also great for Quality Control, as the date can allow both consumers and roasters to identify which day the coffee was roasted and isolate the batch that may have been unsatisfactory. Although we monitor all the roasts which we sell, it can still be a great way for us to get feedback, or make decisions about the roast profile at a later date.
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