Buying coffee on the internet can be intimidating, especially for new enthusiasts. With jargon, different types of blends, varying packaging, and so many being introduced somewhat regularly, you might feel like you’re out of your depth when choosing coffee online.
Knowing the key indicators of a good website will help you get to know who you are ordering from and how authentic the product is. Are you getting the best deal for your money? If you are looking to buy coffee beans or instant coffee online, here is a list of tips to help you choose.
1. What coffee do you like?
The first order of business is how do you like your coffee? This will, of course, set the base for you when shopping for coffee online. Even Beethoven was particular about his coffee and its preparation, using precisely 60 beans for each cup. Taking inspiration from the great artist, choose your coffee wisely. Some blends work great with milk or creamers, but others taste terrible with it.
The taste either gets overpowering or undermined by adding milk. However, it is important to flag that milk can also come in various options. Skimmed milk or homogenized milk both taste different. Caramel or chocolate coffee flavor is enhanced with milk, while jasmine or a citrusy blend is not complemented by milk. So as you look for the types of coffee to choose from, keep in mind what works and what doesn’t with each blend.
2. Check packaging SOPs
A good online coffee store will list down ways in which they package their coffee beans. The standard procedure is a vacuum-sealed container with one valve. This is because freshly roasted beans tend to release a small number of gases for two weeks after being roasted, and these gases need to have a way out.
However, if not packaged correctly, incoming air will make fresh-roasted beans go stale faster and let odors from outside be absorbed in the beans. So a valve is a perfect way to ensure the release of gases without anything from outside coming in.
3. Check the cupping score
The coffee quality ranks on a scale of 1-100, with 100 being the highest quality. When buying coffee online, you might wonder why the prices of coffee vary. One of the reasons is their cupping score. You can struggle to find the cupping score on any packaging, but when you do, this will make a world of difference and help you understand what you are paying for.
Of course, if you’re drinking coffee for the sake of it, then even a $14 coffee can give you the hit you want. However, if you’re wondering how enjoyable that hit is, that depends on how expensive your coffee is.
As someone who likes to savor their coffee, select one with a higher cupping score when choosing something to buy online. For a tasteful and unforgettable experience, look for blends with a score of 80-85.
4. Check the roast date
As discussed earlier, when packaging coffee, there needs to be space for the carbon dioxide and other gases to release after roasting. If not done so, the beans will start to taste sour. So, it is good to check the -roast date and confirm it was at least 7-21 days before the date you place your order online.
Ideally, an online coffee bean store will roast the beans right after you place the order so they can ensure that the freshest coffee beans are delivered to you. You can read through a website’s FAQs to determine how often the company roasts if it isn’t listed with each product.
If you’re are looking to buy coffee for an espresso machine, don’t buy freshly roasted beans, i.e., 4-7 days roasted as it hasn’t adequately degassed. This is important even for filter coffee that doesn’t require a whole two-week wait but still needs to be degassed seven days before using it.
5. Check the price
Of course, buying coffee online will have many perplexed about the price ranges they will see. The prices are an indicator of the quality of coffee you will get. Buying coffee online will make it easier for you to compare prices and understand what you’re purchasing.
Compare a few retailers and see which ones are giving a good deal at a similar price point, so you don’t end up paying too much for your coffee. Order small samples of coffee you’re interested in of different price ranges. You can find a blend that works within your budget and is to your liking before ordering a larger quantity.
6. View the shipping policy
If you’re confused about the roasting time, buying coffee online can be slightly tricky. What kind of delivery services does the brand use as it can affect the speed of delivery? If your coffee takes two-five days to deliver, you don’t need to worry too much, as the coffee isn’t arriving too early.
Try avoiding Friday shipments as anything you order on a Friday will likely be held over in a warehouse over the weekend, and you don’t know the conditions it is being kept in. This can easily compromise the integrity of the coffee beans. Instead, order your coffee on Monday, so you have your shipment delivered to you latest by Friday.
An average American spends around $1100 on coffee each year, which indicates the beverage is loved by many. This has enabled many small businesses to come up and sell premium quality coffee online, leaving you wondering which is the best place to choose from.
There is a world of coffee still left undiscovered, and most people are still scratching the surface with all the information available. The job of a good website is to be transparent with their products and help novices figure out what to buy. But with the tips mentioned above, you shouldn’t have it too hard when purchasing your blend online.