COMMON COFFEE QUESTIONS

How to Use this Page

This page is for Common Coffee Questions and Answers.  It has A LOT of information so we’ve a Table of Contents to make it quick and convenient to use.  Just click on the questions and it’ll bring you right to the answers.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Questions & Answers

ALL ABOUT COFFEE

This page is dedicated to all Questions about Coffee.  'Why this' and 'Why that'.   The more questions YOU ask, the richer we'll all be with information - so PLEASE feel free to ask anything in the comments box below.

If you disagree, then we'll talk about that too.  I'm not too proud to admit when I'm wrong and I'm always eager to learn something new - even if I don't apply it.

I started out knowing nothing more than the basics:

hot water + coffee + sugar + milk = energy

Over time, I learned more and more from experience and I'd like to share this with YOU.  The answers you'll get here are honest.  I'm pragmatic and self-taught.  I don't use rare ingredients from the Himalayas or equipment only found at the ITER Tokamak Fusion Reactor. 

So once again, don't be shy, throw your questions in the comment box below and we'll tackle them one at a time.

Talk to you soon.G Coffee Company Logo PNG red

QUESTION

What qualifies coffee as "Specialty Coffee"? What is Speciality Coffee?

Speciality Coffee is a classification for a level of Coffee and to qualify as Specialty Coffee, it has to score at or above 80 out of 100. The Grading is a whole process where the coffee is "cupped" and a number of components / criteria get scored between 1 and 10, afterwards all the component scores are added up.

If you're curious, a list of the Coffee Grading Components can be found on the Specialty Coffee Association's (SCA) website.  It's fairly long and descriptive, but the final result can score a coffee as high as 100.

Just like most things in this world, we use numbers to describe them some way or another.  When a coffee is Graded, the beans are checked for Defects, Size, Consistency, Flavor, etc. If a Bean qualifies as Specialty Garde Coffee and reaches a score of 80 or above - you can be sure to have a solid cup.

This doesn't mean that ONLY this grade of coffee is good.  It just means that's taken a test and passed with a high score. It's up to YOU to decide if the Coffee is good.

A while back, I wrote a short blog post about the Coffee Flavor Wheel.  While you might not be "grading" the coffee, it's fun to try to find the flavor of your cup on the wheel.

So this is what is considered Specialty Coffee.
QUESTION

What is "Crema" Coffee? I buy it from Lavazza and love it!

So you're wondering what is "Crema Coffee"?  It's is a name used by big companies for marketing purposes only.  In other words, it's just a made up label and doesn't really exist.

Crema is a real thing though, it's the little froth you see on top of Espresso. You can create Crema from any high pressure brewing method like Moka Pot, Espresso, and possibly Prismo.  I've also made a quick tutorial on how you can also use a French Press to make your own crema.

Crema is basically the mixture of air and the oils from coffee.  The reason why it is most visible on espresso is because of the high pressure used to make the shot.

That being said, to get a good crema with espresso you need a few things:

    • Grind size has to be properly set for whatever brewing method you'll be using.
    • The water temperature and pressure need to be correct.
    • The freshness of the coffee is a contributing factor.  The more recent the roast, the more gas you'll find in the coffee. This is because Coffee releases gases after it's been Roasted and it's why you find little air valves on Coffee Bags.
    • Robusta is also a contributing factor. The more Robusta there is, the more crema you'll probably get.

All of the above are factors in the amount of crema you'll get from an espresso shot.  They're listed in order of importance.

To make a long story short, Crema Coffee DOES NOT EXIST - it's just a marketing tool.
QUESTION

What's the Difference between Arabica and Robusta Coffee?

There's more than one difference between Arabica and Robusta Coffee. To start, they're the two most popular major species of coffee on the market.

Arabica is a more delicate plant and it needs to grow in higher elevation. The taste is smoother and the level of caffeine is lower than what's found in Robusta.

Robusta can be grown in harsher conditions. As it's name implies: it's "robust".  That being said, the flavor is usually harsher and caffeine level higher than those of Arabica.

A lot of Coffee Roasters combine the two in Blends for Espresso, this helps them get the best of both worlds. At G Coffee Company, the Grandissimo espresso blend has Brazil and Columbia Arabica beans.  They both give off that caramelly aroma while the Indian Cherry Robusta adds a nice kick to the drink. In the end, combining the two species gives off a nice "multi-layered" experience to your drink.

You need to know that there's also a third main species of coffee - Liberica - we'll do a whole segment on that one day.

For now, we'll just stick with the Difference between Arabica and Robusta Coffees.
QUESTION

Why is Robusta Coffee bad? Or why is Arabica better than Robusta?

You've definitely heard the saying Arabica is Better than Robusta but why do people say this?

Robusta is not bad and Arabica is not good - they're different species of coffee and they have different tastes.

That's the short answer.

By saying something tastes "bad" we're making a subjective statement.  Different people like different things and some prefer one over the other. I'm not trying to be flakey and avoid committing to one answer, but I personally think we're brainwashed into thinking:

          "I only drink 100% Arabica"

When I hear that crap it makes me laugh inside.  So I'll usually make it my mission to have them try a cappuccino using Grandissimo without announcing the presence of Robusta.

What happens next?

These same people REALLY enjoy the blend found in Grandissimo, they praise it, ask how much it is, ask where the Coffee is from, and then mute their surprise when they find out it has 20% Rubusta.

On a side note, I want to point out that all the other Coffees we have are 100% Arabica. Why?  Because this is what people want.

So to get back to answering this question:

    • Theoretically taste is subjective and we shouldn't make a decision based on what we've been marketed
    • In practice we only carry one coffee that contains Robusta - so from what I've seen in business Arabica wins

What are your thoughts on this? Is Arabica better than Robusta? Have you ever tried a 100% robusa drink? Throw your opinion down in the Comments Box below and let us know.
QUESTION

Why is coffee Oily / Shiny sometimes?

Sometimes you'll come across coffee that is oily or shiny - maybe you've wondred why?

Coffee has natural Sugars and Oils.  When Coffee is Roasting, these sugars and oils start to cook inside the bean. The longer the roast, the more these elements start to come out.

When we roast at G Coffee Company, we try to get these natural chemicals to come out in just the right way.  The beans turn brown because of the caramelizing of the sugars. This is why most of our Roast Levels on are in the Medium Spectrum.

However, if the coffee roasts for too long, all of these elements flood out of the beans and they become super shiny and black.  When this happens, we can say the Coffee is Burned.

As long as you find the right level of roasting, the coffee maintains a sweetness. If you go too long, the beans turn out to be all nasty and tasting like fish. Sometimes I burn a roast by accident and that's exactly how the coffee turns out.

If the burned coffee isn't too nasty, that'll be my personal weekly supply. I'm letting you know just in case you're thinking that I keep the best stuff for myself - I don't. 😭

Now you have a better understanding of Why Coffee is Oily or Shiny sometimes.
QUESTION

What's the difference between Decaffeinated Coffee (DECAF) and regular coffee?

The difference between Decaffeinated ( decaf ) and Regular Coffee boils down to an extra processing step after the coffee is grown.

To start, there is no such thing as Coffee grown without Caffeine.

To remove caffeine from coffee, producers use regular coffee (usually lower in quality) and put it through a number of processes until ~95% of the caffeine is removed.

At G Coffee Company, we take the extra step of roasting the Decaf dark in order to get more of that caffeine out of the bean.

This is an Interesting Fact:

    • The caffeine that get's removed doesn't just gets tossed into the bin. It gets resold to companies for other products (i.e. Red Bull, Coca Cola, and pharmaceutical companies, etc).

I'm not a fan of decaf and I can sympathize with anyone that can't drink regular coffee for whatever reason. If you have to drink it, my best recommendation is to turn it into a cappuccino to mask it into something a bit more tasty.

Now that you know the difference between decaffeinated and regular coffee, I hope you understand that there actually is caffeine in it.

Just not that much...
QUESTION

What's the Strongest Coffee?

It's good to ask What's the Strongest Coffee because quite often we think that something Dark is Strong and something Light is Weak. That's actually the opposite and I'll be happy to explain why.

There are two "Strongest" categories here:

    • Flavor
        ∴ The more you roast coffee, the stronger the flavor will become.  If you roast it too much, you might as well use it for chalk on the sidewalk.
    • Caffeine
        ∴ When coffee beans are still green (unroasted) they have the highest amount of caffeine.  The more you roast, the less caffeine there is.

So if you want some super strong flavor, go for something DARK like Grandissimo Espresso, Nicaragua Primo Espresso, or (gulp) Decaf.

If you want something with high amounts of caffeine, look for the Lighter Roasts. Usually our African coffees will do the job because we roast them lighter.

FYI - I'm no Tea expert, but the same goes for White vs Black tea. The White tea has more Caffeine and the Black Tea has less.

So next time someone asks you What's the Strongest Coffee; Brew them a delicate Chemex with a lightly roasted African coffee and SCHOOL their asses. 😉
QUESTION

What's the Best Coffee?

People ask "What's the BEST Coffee?" all the time. It's an easy question that probably just pops up because there are too many choices so they're looking for a recommendation.

You might be reading this, thinking that it's simplistic, but it's actually a very natural question - especially if you trust the person you consider to be a Coffee Expert.

There's a problem with this question though, because it can only be answered by YOU.

"BEST" is subjective and there are a lot of things we don't even realize when we qualify something (like coffee) as the "best".

A lot of people say that Italian Coffee is the Best. Wonder why?

Because when they remember drinking coffee in Italy, they also remember being on vacation, in the summer, with no worries, sitting at a plaza watching life...

Of course they'd say that's the best, I would too!

Atmosphere and experience has a lot of weight in our unconscious mind. That's why there's so much investment and research into Sensory Marketing these days.

But wait!

I can help you answer this question and this is usually how I do it:

    Q1. Do you drink your Coffee with or without Milk?
        A - MILK -> probably American
        A - NO MILK -> probably NOT Espressso, more than likely African or Asian

    Q2. How do you Brew your Coffee at home?
        A - Pour Over (Chemex, V60, Aeropress) -> African or Asian
        A - Pressurized (Moka Pot, Espresso) -> American
        A - Other (French Press, Syphon, Cowboy Style) -> Medium+ Roast Level

    Q3. Are you looking for High Caffeine or Strong Flavor?
        A - High Caffeine -> Light Roast / probably African
        A - Strong Flavor -> Medium+ Roast Level / possibly even Espresso

    Q4. Do you prefer Nuts, Chocolate, Caramel, Fruit, or something "different"?
        A - Nut, Chocolate, or Caramel -> American
        A - Fruits -> African
        A - Something Different -> Asian

From these questions I can usually find What's the BEST COFFEE for you. I've tried my best to reproduce those question in the Filter sidebar of the SHOP page so you can answer those questions for yourself.
G Coffee Company common questions and answers about coffee beans https://gcoffee.net
G Coffee Company common questions and answers about coffee drinks https://gcoffee.net
QUESTION

Can I add Sugar to my Coffee? Is it Taboo to add Sugar to Coffee?

I've been asked if it's Taboo to add Sugar to Coffee.

Coffee snobs say YES because you should be savoring  the subtleties found in each bean as it was cultivated with love and care.

You aren't reading an answer written by a coffee snob though.  I personally add honey to my coffee, and this is something I've been doing for a long time.

In Vietnam they drink their coffee with sweet condensed milk.

There's also this small place that built a multi-billion dollar company selling millions of super sweet coffee drinks all over the world. You might have heard of them - Starbucks?

I'm not saying that adding sugar improves the drink - some people just like it that way.  Try to avoid anyone that jumps down your throat because you're making your coffee the way you want it.

There are ways to sweeten your coffee WITHOUT sugar.

In fact we use Lactose-Free Milk for our lattes and without sugar its perfectly sweet. That's because there's something going on with the proteins that bla bla bla science...

Try it without sugar first, if it doesn't do it for you - break out the spoon and sweeten things up.

So, is it Taboo to add Sugar to your Coffee? No, do what makes you happy.
QUESTION

How can I make Latte & Cappuccinos at home without an Espresso Machine?

Of course you can make Latte and Cappuccino at home without an Espresso-Machine.

I love this question!

It can be done, on a budget, with a little effort and practice.

We've made a video tutorial about Frothing Milk and another about brewing coffee with a Moka Pot.  Take a look at our Brewing Techniques page to find out how to do it.

If you get around to making that cappuccino at home with no Espresso-Machine, send us a photo or something in the Comments Box below - it'll make us proud!
QUESTION

Which Coffee (or Coffee Drinks) have the most Caffeine?

The Coffee Drinks that have the most Caffeine depends on MANY variables, but don't worry because it isn't that complicated. If you're looking to boost the caffeine in your cup, you get to play with the factors below.

    • Coffee Brewing Method:
        ∴ Each method of brewing coffee results in a different outcome (from syrup-like Espresso to light and vibrant Chemex).

    • Water Temperature:
        ∴ The hotter the water, the faster the essence of coffee gets absorbed into the water.

    • Water to Coffee Ratio:
        ∴ Using a lower proportion of water for higher amounts of coffee contributes to a higher dosage of caffeine.

    • Extraction Time:
        ∴ The longer the water sits with the ground coffee, the more the caffeine will be absorbed into the water.

    • Coffee type:
        ∴ As we mention with the differences between Robusta and Arabica, there is a higher concentration of caffeine in Robusta overall.

    • Roast Level:
        ∴ As coffee gets roasted, the deterioration of chemicals accelerate.  This means that the darker the coffee, the less caffeine there is.

    • Milk or no Milk:
        ∴ Milk coats the stomach and intestinal lining. By adding milk to your coffee, you are creating a barrier for your body to absorb the caffeine you'll get in a cup of coffee.  Think of this the same way you'd drink a glass of milk before drinking alcohol or eating spicy food.

All of these are factors to how much caffeine you'll get from a single cup of coffee. None of them are singularly the most important and all of them can be adjusted one way or another.

I'm sure you'd agree that coffee's a pretty complex thing, but don't get overwhelmed. Changing these variables one at a time will help you find which coffee drinks have the most caffeine while exploring which drink form you enjoy the most.
QUESTION

What’s the difference between Cappuccino , Latte , and Flat-White ?

There is only one technical difference between Cappuccino, Latte, and Flat-White Coffees: the percentage of Foam.

    • Cappuccino ~50% foam
    • Latte 10-20% foam
    • Flat White ~5% foam

Let's put this example into practice:

    1. Take three identical coffee mugs with a capacity of 300ml.
    2. Make three identical Double Espressos, each ~60ml and add that to each mug.
    3. Create the warm frothy milk like we show in this video with foam for each and pour them into the mugs.

In the end, each cup will have:
    • Cappuccino - 60ml Espresso + 120ml of milk + the rest in foam

    • Latte - 60ml Espresso + ~200ml of milk + the rest in foam

    • Flat White - 60ml Espresso + 230ml of milk + the rest in foam

To summarize this, the drinks from Strongest to Weakest in terms of flavor and caffeine:

    #1 Cappucino (strongest flavor & caffeine)
    #2 Latte (medium flavor & caffeine)
    #3 Flat White (lightest flavor & caffeine)

In terms of presentation, each place makes their coffee differently.  At G Coffee Company we start ALL drinks with a base of espresso, foam the milk, then pour.  Other places with do it differently because it's all about each places' style.

FYI - There's no reason why there should be a price difference between Cappuccino , Latte , and Flat-White  .  Think about that next time you visit a café and see price variations. 🤔
QUESTION

Is Darker Coffee Stronger? Does Dark Coffee have more Caffeine?​

          
The Darker the Coffee the Stronger the Caffeine.

This is a common misconception and it surprises many people when they hear that's actually the other way around.

When Coffee is Roasted, it progressively Looses Caffeine. The taste get's stronger, yes, but caffeine and other natural chemicals found in coffee leave the bean as it goes through the roasting process.

So to answer your question: no.

When Coffee is "green" (unroasted), it has the highest concentration of Caffeine, and vice versa.

On a side note, I wouldn't recommend playing around with Green Coffee. Before it's roasted, the bean is extremely dense and hard. It's so hard that I'm personally scared to put it into any of my grinders - out of fear that it'll damage the grinder.

Next time you're having coffee with someone, ask them if they think if darker coffee has stronger caffeine - then surprise them with this new information. 🤓
QUESTION

What setting should I use to Grind my Coffee Beans with my Thermomix?

So you just dropped over $1000 on a Thermomix, you're super excited about all the cool stuff it can do, and now you want to Grind your Freshly Roasted G Coffee Beans in the Thermomix?

Awesome!

    1. Start by opening the Thermomix lid, measure out 50 grams of whole beans, and close the lid.

    2. Next, look in the mirror and yell at yourself.

In other words:

Don't grind your coffee with a Thermomix.

Just stop.


The Thermomix isn't a magical cauldron that can cook beef wellington, grind coffee, or bring lasting peace the the Middle East.

I don't care what Steve or anyone else from 101CAFE says about using a Thermomix to Grind Coffe Beans.

Don't do it!

If you need your coffee ground, we'll be happy to do it for you at G Coffee Company.
QUESTION

How should I Grind my Coffee? What's the correct way to Grind Coffee?​

Coffee Grind Size is MASSIVELY important so you really need to make sure it's correct or else you're coffee's flavor will be a disappointment - either WAY too strong or unimpressively wimpy.

The first video we ever published, back in 2018, was about Grind Size. I'm not very othodox when it comes to Brewing Coffee, but Grind Size is a fundamental.

This is why we're more than happy to offer the option of grinding coffee on request in our shop. Just select your brewing method when you ad your coffee to the cart and we'll take care of the rest.

If you have other questions about how to get the correct Coffee Grind Size, feel free to comment in the box below.
QUESTION

What's the Best Coffee Machine?

Just like important decisions, there is no binary answer to "what's the BEST Coffee Machine".

You have to start by asking yourself a few questions:

    • What's your budget?
    • What kind of coffee do you want to drink every day?
    • How much space do you have a home for this thing?
    • How much time do you want to spend making coffee every day?

Once you answer these questions, Contact Us and we'll be happy to go over the best options for what's the best coffee machine FOR YOU.
QUESTION

What's the Best Coffee Grinder?

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QUESTION

Is it better to have a Coffee Machine that has a built-in Grinder? What are the Pros and Cons?

If you're wondering if you should buy a Coffee Machine with a built-in Grinder, we're happy to point out some of the Pros and Cons of a "Grind and Brew Maker" machine.

Having an integrated grinder / coffee machine has both advantages and disadvantages:

PROS
    Less Space is used on your kitchen counter top and you only have to use one electrical outlet.
    Cleaner because you won't have to move coffee grounds from the grinder to the machine and sometimes this can get a little messy.
    Price is usually lower than if you bought these items separately.

CONS
    Breakage can be a big problem because if one of the two devices within the unit breaks, you're stuck with a big box that does nothing. Because there are more moving parts, there's a higher chance that the combined units break.
    Adjustability for Grind Size is usually much more contrained (less Flexibility) than if you have an independant Coffee Grinder.
    Quality for built-in grinders is usually lower than if they were separate units. Look at it from the manufacturers' point of view - customers with less counter-top space, looking for a lower price that dedicated independant machines, and willingness to compromize on grinding options are probably not in he market for high-end equipment.

All this being said, depending on your needs, this might be the perfect option for you. I have customers who've had all-in-one machines for years and they're completely happy with them.

If you're on the more conveneint and pragmatic end of the coffee drinker's spectrum, then maybe buying a coffee machine with a built-in grinder is the perfec soluion for you.
G Coffee Company common questions and answers about coffee equipment https://gcoffee.net
G Coffee Company common questions and answers about coffee miscellaneous https://gcoffee.net
QUESTION

How can I Roast Coffee Beans at home?

So you've finally come around to the decsison to Roast Coffee Beans at Home...

Want me to show you how?

I'll be happy to make a video on how to roast coffee in a pan at home, but I need a little incentive.

Drop a line in the Comments Box and once I get five requests (from different people <-- don't act cute) - I'll make it happen.

After that video goes up, you'll be able to roast coffee at home like BOSS.
QUESTION

When will you open another Coffee Shop / Café?

The question I get asked more often than most is "when will you open a new Cafe or Coffee Shop?"

Honestly, I don't know if that'll happen.

I've thought alot about it, and it would really need to check off a bunch of boxes:

    - Location with high foot traffic.
Residential neighborhoods are good, but the place would need to be in an area with high foot traffic, for example on a main street beween a large residential complex and a popular grocery store.

    - Affordable rent.
Rent should equal or be lower than five days of expected average gross revenue. The quick and dirty numbers work out so that rent/utilities cost 1 week, staff / accounting / insurance cost / taxes 1 week, supplies cost 1 week, and if those are what they should - the rest is left for savings & investments.

    - Easy parking.
If people can't easily park around you, you're commercial reach for that location will be mostly limited to residents within a 1km radius.

    - A place with charm and charisma.
the biggest reason people go to a cafe is for atmosphere. Of course coffee is important, but you can make most of these drinks at home. You want to be in a space that's got character, something different from the rest, something with a soul.

    - Outside seating.
When the weather is nice, having outside seating is great for customers and it also serves as streetside advertsing. No need for a sign.

    - Friendly neighbors.
We've had bad neighbors in the past - and they made my life an absolute nightmare. They can literally prevent a place from opening - I won't mention names, but a great couple bought a beautiful corner location years ago, they renovated the whole place, then the upstairs naighbor legally blocked them from opening their doors. The place is, to this day, still waiting for court approval.

    - A good landlord.
Ideally I'd like to own the place, so at least I could consider the monthly rent payment as a long term investment. But if I couldn't buy the place, then I'd need to have a good landlord. One that fixes problems quickly, and doesn't try to squeeze every penny out of the business when they see that the place is doing well.

    - BIG windows to let a lot of sunlight in.
I'm a big fan of natural light, it's beautiful, saves on electricity, and adds positivity and optimism to the space.

Also a BIG thing is that I wouldn't want to be in there 24/7.  I'd need a team of Great People who I can align with and understand how to take ownership. Even though I really enjoy socializing, making coffees, experimenting, etc... I've got my personal ups & downs and sometimes (just like most people) I just don't feel like talking to anyone.

Told you I'd be honest.

So these are the requirements I would have to open a new Coffee Shop / Café.
FINAL NOTE

QUESTIONS & ANSWERS

This is a safe place to be curious, make mistakes, and be unsophisticated about Coffee. One thing that I see occasionally in the coffee world is “Coffee Snobbery” and I personally can’t stand it.

Coffee is just as much (if not more) a Social Lubricant than alcohol.  It’s there to bring us together and allow us to connect, exchange ideas, laugh, and strengthen relationships.

I’ve created this page specifically for people to ask any question they have about Coffee without worrying about being looked down on.

If you have a common (or VERY specific) question, comment, and/or a piece of constructive criticism about Coffee – GREAT!  You’re more than welcome and encouraged to participate. If you want to answer someone else’s question – brownie points to you.

Hope to hear from you soon!

COMMON COFFEE
QUESTIONS

This page is for Common Coffee Questions & Answers.  It has A LOT of information so I’ve a Table of Contents to make it quick and convenient to use.  Just click on the questions and it’ll bring you right to the answers.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Questions & Answers

ALL ABOUT COFFEE

This page is dedicated to all Questions about Coffee.  'Why this' and 'Why that'.   The more questions YOU ask, the richer we'll all be with information - so PLEASE feel free to ask anything in the comments box below.

If you disagree, then we'll talk about that too.  I'm not too proud to admit when I'm wrong and I'm always eager to learn something new - even if I don't apply it.

I started out knowing nothing more than the basics:

hot water + coffee + sugar + milk = energy

Over time, I learned more and more from experience and I'd like to share this with YOU.  The answers you'll get here are honest.  I'm pragmatic and self-taught.  I don't use rare ingredients from the Himalayas or equipment only found at the ITER Tokamak Fusion Reactor. 

So once again, don't be shy, throw your questions in the comment box below and we'll tackle them one at a time.

Talk to you soon.G Coffee Company Logo PNG red

Coffee BEAN Questions

QUESTION

What qualifies coffee as "Specialty Coffee"? What is Speciality Coffee?

Speciality Coffee is a classification for a level of Coffee and to qualify as Specialty Coffee, it has to score at or above 80 out of 100. The Grading is a whole process where the coffee is "cupped" and a number of components / criteria get scored between 1 and 10, afterwards all the component scores are added up.

If you're curious, a list of the Coffee Grading Components can be found on the Specialty Coffee Association's (SCA) website.  It's fairly long and descriptive, but the final result can score a coffee as high as 100.

Just like most things in this world, we use numbers to describe them some way or another.  When a coffee is Graded, the beans are checked for Defects, Size, Consistency, Flavor, etc. If a Bean qualifies as Specialty Garde Coffee and reaches a score of 80 or above - you can be sure to have a solid cup.

This doesn't mean that ONLY this grade of coffee is good.  It just means that's taken a test and passed with a high score. It's up to YOU to decide if the Coffee is good.

A while back, I wrote a short blog post about the Coffee Flavor Wheel.  While you might not be "grading" the coffee, it's fun to try to find the flavor of your cup on the wheel.

So this is what is considered Specialty Coffee.
QUESTION

What is "Crema" Coffee? I buy it from Lavazza and love it!

So you're wondering what is "Crema Coffee"?  It's is a name used by big companies for marketing purposes only.  In other words, it's just a made up label and doesn't really exist.

Crema is a real thing though, it's the little froth you see on top of Espresso. You can create Crema from any high pressure brewing method like Moka Pot, Espresso, and possibly Prismo.  I've also made a quick tutorial on how you can also use a French Press to make your own crema.

Crema is basically the mixture of air and the oils from coffee.  The reason why it is most visible on espresso is because of the high pressure used to make the shot.

That being said, to get a good crema with espresso you need a few things:

    • Grind size has to be properly set for whatever brewing method you'll be using.
    • The water temperature and pressure need to be correct.
    • The freshness of the coffee is a contributing factor.  The more recent the roast, the more gas you'll find in the coffee. This is because Coffee releases gases after it's been Roasted and it's why you find little air valves on Coffee Bags.
    • Robusta is also a contributing factor. The more Robusta there is, the more crema you'll probably get.

All of the above are factors in the amount of crema you'll get from an espresso shot.  They're listed in order of importance.

To make a long story short, Crema Coffee DOES NOT EXIST - it's just a marketing tool.
QUESTION

What's the Difference between Arabica and Robusta Coffee?

There's more than one difference between Arabica and Robusta Coffee. To start, they're the two most popular major species of coffee on the market.

Arabica is a more delicate plant and it needs to grow in higher elevation. The taste is smoother and the level of caffeine is lower than what's found in Robusta.

Robusta can be grown in harsher conditions. As it's name implies: it's "robust".  That being said, the flavor is usually harsher and caffeine level higher than those of Arabica.

A lot of Coffee Roasters combine the two in Blends for Espresso, this helps them get the best of both worlds. At G Coffee Company, the Grandissimo espresso blend has Brazil and Columbia Arabica beans.  They both give off that caramelly aroma while the Indian Cherry Robusta adds a nice kick to the drink. In the end, combining the two species gives off a nice "multi-layered" experience to your drink.

You need to know that there's also a third main species of coffee - Liberica - we'll do a whole segment on that one day.

For now, we'll just stick with the Difference between Arabica and Robusta Coffees.
QUESTION

Why is Robusta Coffee bad? Or why is Arabica better than Robusta?

You've definitely heard the saying Arabica is Better than Robusta but why do people say this?

Robusta is not bad and Arabica is not good - they're different species of coffee and they have different tastes.

That's the short answer.

By saying something tastes "bad" we're making a subjective statement.  Different people like different things and some prefer one over the other. I'm not trying to be flakey and avoid committing to one answer, but I personally think we're brainwashed into thinking:

          "I only drink 100% Arabica"

When I hear that crap it makes me laugh inside.  So I'll usually make it my mission to have them try a cappuccino using Grandissimo without announcing the presence of Robusta.

What happens next?

These same people REALLY enjoy the blend found in Grandissimo, they praise it, ask how much it is, ask where the Coffee is from, and then mute their surprise when they find out it has 20% Rubusta.

On a side note, I want to point out that all the other Coffees we have are 100% Arabica. Why?  Because this is what people want.

So to get back to answering this question:

    • Theoretically taste is subjective and we shouldn't make a decision based on what we've been marketed
    • In practice we only carry one coffee that contains Robusta - so from what I've seen in business Arabica wins

What are your thoughts on this? Is Arabica better than Robusta? Have you ever tried a 100% robusa drink? Throw your opinion down in the Comments Box below and let us know.
QUESTION

Why is coffee Oily / Shiny sometimes?

Sometimes you'll come across coffee that is oily or shiny - maybe you've wondred why?

Coffee has natural Sugars and Oils.  When Coffee is Roasting, these sugars and oils start to cook inside the bean. The longer the roast, the more these elements start to come out.

When we roast at G Coffee Company, we try to get these natural chemicals to come out in just the right way.  The beans turn brown because of the caramelizing of the sugars. This is why most of our Roast Levels on are in the Medium Spectrum.

However, if the coffee roasts for too long, all of these elements flood out of the beans and they become super shiny and black.  When this happens, we can say the Coffee is Burned.

As long as you find the right level of roasting, the coffee maintains a sweetness. If you go too long, the beans turn out to be all nasty and tasting like fish. Sometimes I burn a roast by accident and that's exactly how the coffee turns out.

If the burned coffee isn't too nasty, that'll be my personal weekly supply. I'm letting you know just in case you're thinking that I keep the best stuff for myself - I don't. 😭

Now you have a better understanding of Why Coffee is Oily or Shiny sometimes.
QUESTION

What's the difference between Decaffeinated Coffee (DECAF) and regular coffee?

The difference between Decaffeinated ( decaf ) and Regular Coffee boils down to an extra processing step after the coffee is grown.

To start, there is no such thing as Coffee grown without Caffeine.

To remove caffeine from coffee, producers use regular coffee (usually lower in quality) and put it through a number of processes until ~95% of the caffeine is removed.

At G Coffee Company, we take the extra step of roasting the Decaf dark in order to get more of that caffeine out of the bean.

This is an Interesting Fact:

    • The caffeine that get's removed doesn't just gets tossed into the bin. It gets resold to companies for other products (i.e. Red Bull, Coca Cola, and pharmaceutical companies, etc).

I'm not a fan of decaf and I can sympathize with anyone that can't drink regular coffee for whatever reason. If you have to drink it, my best recommendation is to turn it into a cappuccino to mask it into something a bit more tasty.

Now that you know the difference between decaffeinated and regular coffee, I hope you understand that there actually is caffeine in it.

Just not that much...
QUESTION

What's the Strongest Coffee?

It's good to ask What's the Strongest Coffee because quite often we think that something Dark is Strong and something Light is Weak. That's actually the opposite and I'll be happy to explain why.

There are two "Strongest" categories here:

    • Flavor
        ∴ The more you roast coffee, the stronger the flavor will become.  If you roast it too much, you might as well use it for chalk on the sidewalk.
    • Caffeine
        ∴ When coffee beans are still green (unroasted) they have the highest amount of caffeine.  The more you roast, the less caffeine there is.

So if you want some super strong flavor, go for something DARK like Grandissimo Espresso, Nicaragua Primo Espresso, or (gulp) Decaf.

If you want something with high amounts of caffeine, look for the Lighter Roasts. Usually our African coffees will do the job because we roast them lighter.

FYI - I'm no Tea expert, but the same goes for White vs Black tea. The White tea has more Caffeine and the Black Tea has less.

So next time someone asks you What's the Strongest Coffee; Brew them a delicate Chemex with a lightly roasted African coffee and SCHOOL their asses. 😉
QUESTION

What's the Best Coffee?

People ask "What's the BEST Coffee?" all the time. It's an easy question that probably just pops up because there are too many choices so they're looking for a recommendation.

You might be reading this, thinking that it's simplistic, but it's actually a very natural question - especially if you trust the person you consider to be a Coffee Expert.

There's a problem with this question though, because it can only be answered by YOU.

"BEST" is subjective and there are a lot of things we don't even realize when we qualify something (like coffee) as the "best".

A lot of people say that Italian Coffee is the Best. Wonder why?

Because when they remember drinking coffee in Italy, they also remember being on vacation, in the summer, with no worries, sitting at a plaza watching life...

Of course they'd say that's the best, I would too!

Atmosphere and experience has a lot of weight in our unconscious mind. That's why there's so much investment and research into Sensory Marketing these days.

But wait!

I can help you answer this question and this is usually how I do it:

    Q1. Do you drink your Coffee with or without Milk?
        A - MILK -> probably American
        A - NO MILK -> probably NOT Espressso, more than likely African or Asian

    Q2. How do you Brew your Coffee at home?
        A - Pour Over (Chemex, V60, Aeropress) -> African or Asian
        A - Pressurized (Moka Pot, Espresso) -> American
        A - Other (French Press, Syphon, Cowboy Style) -> Medium+ Roast Level

    Q3. Are you looking for High Caffeine or Strong Flavor?
        A - High Caffeine -> Light Roast / probably African
        A - Strong Flavor -> Medium+ Roast Level / possibly even Espresso

    Q4. Do you prefer Nuts, Chocolate, Caramel, Fruit, or something "different"?
        A - Nut, Chocolate, or Caramel -> American
        A - Fruits -> African
        A - Something Different -> Asian

From these questions I can usually find What's the BEST COFFEE for you. I've tried my best to reproduce those question in the Filter sidebar of the SHOP page so you can answer those questions for yourself.

Coffee DRINK Questions

QUESTION

Can I add Sugar to my Coffee? Is it Taboo to add Sugar to Coffee?

I've been asked if it's Taboo to add Sugar to Coffee.

Coffee snobs say YES because you should be savoring  the subtleties found in each bean as it was cultivated with love and care.

You aren't reading an answer written by a coffee snob though.  I personally add honey to my coffee, and this is something I've been doing for a long time.

In Vietnam they drink their coffee with sweet condensed milk.

There's also this small place that built a multi-billion dollar company selling millions of super sweet coffee drinks all over the world. You might have heard of them - Starbucks?

I'm not saying that adding sugar improves the drink - some people just like it that way.  Try to avoid anyone that jumps down your throat because you're making your coffee the way you want it.

There are ways to sweeten your coffee WITHOUT sugar.

In fact we use Lactose-Free Milk for our lattes and without sugar its perfectly sweet. That's because there's something going on with the proteins that bla bla bla science...

Try it without sugar first, if it doesn't do it for you - break out the spoon and sweeten things up.

So, is it Taboo to add Sugar to your Coffee? No, do what makes you happy.
QUESTION

How can I make Latte & Cappuccinos at home without an Espresso Machine?

Of course you can make Latte and Cappuccino at home without an Espresso-Machine.

I love this question!

It can be done, on a budget, with a little effort and practice.

We've made a video tutorial about Frothing Milk and another about brewing coffee with a Moka Pot.  Take a look at our Brewing Techniques page to find out how to do it.

If you get around to making that cappuccino at home with no Espresso-Machine, send us a photo or something in the Comments Box below - it'll make us proud!
QUESTION

Which Coffee (or Coffee Drinks) have the most Caffeine?

The Coffee Drinks that have the most Caffeine depends on MANY variables, but don't worry because it isn't that complicated. If you're looking to boost the caffeine in your cup, you get to play with the factors below.

    • Coffee Brewing Method:
        ∴ Each method of brewing coffee results in a different outcome (from syrup-like Espresso to light and vibrant Chemex).

    • Water Temperature:
        ∴ The hotter the water, the faster the essence of coffee gets absorbed into the water.

    • Water to Coffee Ratio:
        ∴ Using a lower proportion of water for higher amounts of coffee contributes to a higher dosage of caffeine.

    • Extraction Time:
        ∴ The longer the water sits with the ground coffee, the more the caffeine will be absorbed into the water.

    • Coffee type:
        ∴ As we mention with the differences between Robusta and Arabica, there is a higher concentration of caffeine in Robusta overall.

    • Roast Level:
        ∴ As coffee gets roasted, the deterioration of chemicals accelerate.  This means that the darker the coffee, the less caffeine there is.

    • Milk or no Milk:
        ∴ Milk coats the stomach and intestinal lining. By adding milk to your coffee, you are creating a barrier for your body to absorb the caffeine you'll get in a cup of coffee.  Think of this the same way you'd drink a glass of milk before drinking alcohol or eating spicy food.

All of these are factors to how much caffeine you'll get from a single cup of coffee. None of them are singularly the most important and all of them can be adjusted one way or another.

I'm sure you'd agree that coffee's a pretty complex thing, but don't get overwhelmed. Changing these variables one at a time will help you find which coffee drinks have the most caffeine while exploring which drink form you enjoy the most.
QUESTION

What’s the difference between Cappuccino , Latte , and Flat-White ?

There is only one technical difference between Cappuccino, Latte, and Flat-White Coffees: the percentage of Foam.

    • Cappuccino ~50% foam
    • Latte 10-20% foam
    • Flat White ~5% foam

Let's put this example into practice:

    1. Take three identical coffee mugs with a capacity of 300ml.
    2. Make three identical Double Espressos, each ~60ml and add that to each mug.
    3. Create the warm frothy milk like we show in this video with foam for each and pour them into the mugs.

In the end, each cup will have:
    • Cappuccino - 60ml Espresso + 120ml of milk + the rest in foam

    • Latte - 60ml Espresso + ~200ml of milk + the rest in foam

    • Flat White - 60ml Espresso + 230ml of milk + the rest in foam

To summarize this, the drinks from Strongest to Weakest in terms of flavor and caffeine:

    #1 Cappucino (strongest flavor & caffeine)
    #2 Latte (medium flavor & caffeine)
    #3 Flat White (lightest flavor & caffeine)

In terms of presentation, each place makes their coffee differently.  At G Coffee Company we start ALL drinks with a base of espresso, foam the milk, then pour.  Other places with do it differently because it's all about each places' style.

FYI - There's no reason why there should be a price difference between Cappuccino , Latte , and Flat-White  .  Think about that next time you visit a café and see price variations. 🤔
QUESTION

Is Darker Coffee Stronger? Does Dark Coffee have more Caffeine?​

          
The Darker the Coffee the Stronger the Caffeine.

This is a common misconception and it surprises many people when they hear that's actually the other way around.

When Coffee is Roasted, it progressively Looses Caffeine. The taste get's stronger, yes, but caffeine and other natural chemicals found in coffee leave the bean as it goes through the roasting process.

So to answer your question: no.

When Coffee is "green" (unroasted), it has the highest concentration of Caffeine, and vice versa.

On a side note, I wouldn't recommend playing around with Green Coffee. Before it's roasted, the bean is extremely dense and hard. It's so hard that I'm personally scared to put it into any of my grinders - out of fear that it'll damage the grinder.

Next time you're having coffee with someone, ask them if they think if darker coffee has stronger caffeine - then surprise them with this new information. 🤓

Coffee EQUIPMENT Questions

QUESTION

What setting should I use to Grind my Coffee Beans with my Thermomix?

So you just dropped over $1000 on a Thermomix, you're super excited about all the cool stuff it can do, and now you want to Grind your Freshly Roasted G Coffee Beans in the Thermomix?

Awesome!

    1. Start by opening the Thermomix lid, measure out 50 grams of whole beans, and close the lid.

    2. Next, look in the mirror and yell at yourself.

In other words:

Don't grind your coffee with a Thermomix.

Just stop.


The Thermomix isn't a magical cauldron that can cook beef wellington, grind coffee, or bring lasting peace the the Middle East.

I don't care what Steve or anyone else from 101CAFE says about using a Thermomix to Grind Coffe Beans.

Don't do it!

If you need your coffee ground, we'll be happy to do it for you at G Coffee Company.
QUESTION

How should I Grind my Coffee? What's the correct way to Grind Coffee?​

Coffee Grind Size is MASSIVELY important so you really need to make sure it's correct or else you're coffee's flavor will be a disappointment - either WAY too strong or unimpressively wimpy.

The first video we ever published, back in 2018, was about Grind Size. I'm not very othodox when it comes to Brewing Coffee, but Grind Size is a fundamental.

This is why we're more than happy to offer the option of grinding coffee on request in our shop. Just select your brewing method when you ad your coffee to the cart and we'll take care of the rest.

If you have other questions about how to get the correct Coffee Grind Size, feel free to comment in the box below.
QUESTION

What's the Best Coffee Machine?

Just like important decisions, there is no binary answer to "what's the BEST Coffee Machine".

You have to start by asking yourself a few questions:

    • What's your budget?
    • What kind of coffee do you want to drink every day?
    • How much space do you have a home for this thing?
    • How much time do you want to spend making coffee every day?

Once you answer these questions, Contact Us and we'll be happy to go over the best options for what's the best coffee machine FOR YOU.
QUESTION

What's the Best Coffee Grinder?

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QUESTION

Is it better to have a Coffee Machine that has a built-in Grinder? What are the Pros and Cons?

If you're wondering if you should buy a Coffee Machine with a built-in Grinder, we're happy to point out some of the Pros and Cons of a "Grind and Brew Maker" machine.

Having an integrated grinder / coffee machine has both advantages and disadvantages:

PROS
    Less Space is used on your kitchen counter top and you only have to use one electrical outlet.
    Cleaner because you won't have to move coffee grounds from the grinder to the machine and sometimes this can get a little messy.
    Price is usually lower than if you bought these items separately.

CONS
    Breakage can be a big problem because if one of the two devices within the unit breaks, you're stuck with a big box that does nothing. Because there are more moving parts, there's a higher chance that the combined units break.
    Adjustability for Grind Size is usually much more contrained (less Flexibility) than if you have an independant Coffee Grinder.
    Quality for built-in grinders is usually lower than if they were separate units. Look at it from the manufacturers' point of view - customers with less counter-top space, looking for a lower price that dedicated independant machines, and willingness to compromize on grinding options are probably not in he market for high-end equipment.

All this being said, depending on your needs, this might be the perfect option for you. I have customers who've had all-in-one machines for years and they're completely happy with them.

If you're on the more conveneint and pragmatic end of the coffee drinker's spectrum, then maybe buying a coffee machine with a built-in grinder is the perfec soluion for you.

MISCELANEOUS Coffee Questions

QUESTION

How can I Roast Coffee Beans at home?

So you've finally come around to the decsison to Roast Coffee Beans at Home...

Want me to show you how?

I'll be happy to make a video on how to roast coffee in a pan at home, but I need a little incentive.

Drop a line in the Comments Box and once I get five requests (from different people <-- don't act cute) - I'll make it happen.

After that video goes up, you'll be able to roast coffee at home like BOSS.
QUESTION

When will you open another Coffee Shop / Café?

The question I get asked more often than most is "when will you open a new Cafe or Coffee Shop?"

Honestly, I don't know if that'll happen.

I've thought alot about it, and it would really need to check off a bunch of boxes:

    - Location with high foot traffic.
Residential neighborhoods are good, but the place would need to be in an area with high foot traffic, for example on a main street beween a large residential complex and a popular grocery store.

    - Affordable rent.
Rent should equal or be lower than five days of expected average gross revenue. The quick and dirty numbers work out so that rent/utilities cost 1 week, staff / accounting / insurance cost / taxes 1 week, supplies cost 1 week, and if those are what they should - the rest is left for savings & investments.

    - Easy parking.
If people can't easily park around you, you're commercial reach for that location will be mostly limited to residents within a 1km radius.

    - A place with charm and charisma.
the biggest reason people go to a cafe is for atmosphere. Of course coffee is important, but you can make most of these drinks at home. You want to be in a space that's got character, something different from the rest, something with a soul.

    - Outside seating.
When the weather is nice, having outside seating is great for customers and it also serves as streetside advertsing. No need for a sign.

    - Friendly neighbors.
We've had bad neighbors in the past - and they made my life an absolute nightmare. They can literally prevent a place from opening - I won't mention names, but a great couple bought a beautiful corner location years ago, they renovated the whole place, then the upstairs naighbor legally blocked them from opening their doors. The place is, to this day, still waiting for court approval.

    - A good landlord.
Ideally I'd like to own the place, so at least I could consider the monthly rent payment as a long term investment. But if I couldn't buy the place, then I'd need to have a good landlord. One that fixes problems quickly, and doesn't try to squeeze every penny out of the business when they see that the place is doing well.

    - BIG windows to let a lot of sunlight in.
I'm a big fan of natural light, it's beautiful, saves on electricity, and adds positivity and optimism to the space.

Also a BIG thing is that I wouldn't want to be in there 24/7.  I'd need a team of Great People who I can align with and understand how to take ownership. Even though I really enjoy socializing, making coffees, experimenting, etc... I've got my personal ups & downs and sometimes (just like most people) I just don't feel like talking to anyone.

Told you I'd be honest.

So these are the requirements I would have to open a new Coffee Shop / Café.

Whatever other Coffee Questions you can think of,
post them in the comments box below.

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