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Secrets of the Barista Secret #1

Coffee Storage

Coffee Storage
The question I get asked more than any other is, “how do I store my coffee beans”? It’s a very important question.
I was once at a dinner party and at the end of the meal the host stood on a stool and reached high for a jar of his most precious coffee. “I only ever bring these out on special occasions”, he said with pride. Needless to say, I asked for an Earl Grey that night.
Believe it or not, people get really passionate about this subject. Here’s my take on it.

Coffee is food. It grows on trees, and it will perish rapidly if exposed to oxygen or water.

There are two types of food when it comes to freezing. Those that freeze well, and those that don’t. For the foods that freeze well it is obvious that they will keep longer in a freezer than just refrigerated.
Coffee will freeze just fine. The problems come when air and water get involved. If you leave your bag of frozen coffee open for half an hour before you re-freeze you have allowed the destructive processes to begin.

The trick is to keep your coffee in a zip lock bag with the air removed. Open it and take what you need quickly and reseal and put it right back where you got it from pronto.

You will only get a week or so of storage for ground coffee in the refrigerator and over a month if frozen. In whole bean form you should get three times this.

The best way to buy your beans is in whole bean form. This way the flavour is locked inside the bean until it is ground.

To make the point a bit clearer in our espresso bars we grind the beans fresh for each individual cup of coffee. We have noticed that it only takes twenty minutes for the crema on an espresso to go from about 90% of the shot to about 30%. Crema is the key to a good espresso, if you didn’t know already.
Here’s the bottom line. Refrigeration is good but freezing is better if you can keep the nasties away. If you want to find out for sure, simply do a controlled experiment. Keep some in the fridge and some in the freezer and trust your taste buds to give you the right answer.

Enjoy your coffee.

Rob Mergard Director

Dancing Bean Espresso.

Comments (1)

  • Administrator
    26 September 2011 at 05:26 |

    hey, this is my comment :o)

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