Learn about Coffee

The Basics 101

There's so much to learn about coffee. Here's some basic coffee information to get you started on your journey to becoming a coffee expert, or at least have more knowledge as coffee drinker.


 Coffee Plant

When you drink your morning cup of coffee with its welcoming aroma and smooth taste, do you think about what’s in your cup and where it came from? Coffee (the genus Coffea) is part of the botanical family Rubiaceae, one of the largest families in the plant kingdom. There are some 25 species of coffee plants, but only two, Arabica and Robusta, provide almost all the coffee we drink. And did you know that coffee is a cousin of the gardenia?

By . Published , last updated March 24, 2019.


Brewing the perfect Cup of Coffee, 1961 Style


Advice for brewing the perfect cup of coffee

For brewing the perfect cup of coffee at home, the viewer is advised to start with a clean pot. Then the key: carefully measure each of the three ingredients: water, coffee, and time.

  • water: 3/4 cup of cold water for each cup of coffee
  • coffee: one level CBI measure (a Coffee Brewing Institute approved 2-tablespoon measure) per cup, using fresh coffee, properly ground for your coffee maker
  • time: carefully and accurately measured so the coffee is not over-extracted — this varies according to the type of coffee pot you are using:
    • percolator: 6 – 8 minutes
    • drip: 4 – 6 minutes
    • vacuum method – not more than 3 minutes after the coffee and boiling water are in contact


Coffee Roasts from Light to Dark

What’s your favorite coffee roast? Dark? Light? Somewhere in between? The degree to which coffee beans are roasted is one of the most important factors that determine the taste of the coffee in the cup. The roasting process transforms bland raw beans into the distinctively aromatic, flavorful, crunchy beans that we recognize as coffee. Here’s a “coffee 101” guide to coffee roasts from light to dark.


How to Store Coffee to Keep It Fresh

To enjoy a great cup of coffee at home, make sure the coffee you’re brewing is as fresh as possible. Coffee is perishable. It begins to lose freshness soon after roasting. As coffee loses freshness, its natural flavors and aromas are diminished. To reduce the likelihood of brewing stale coffee, use your coffee as soon as you can, and when you store it, keep it away from the four agents of deterioration: excessive air, moisture, heat, and light.


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