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The enemy of fresh roasted coffee is oxygen

May 20, 2007 Posted by Chris Tingom Filed under Uncategorized

I found this tidbit in the web site. Thought it was worth sharing.

The enemy of fresh roasted coffee is oxygen, and as long as the coffee is desorbing CO2, oxygen cannot be absorbed. At approximately 10 days, coffee is completely degassed of CO2 and the coffee is beginning to stale. This process is similar to the yeast in bread. Once the yeast in bread degasses, the bread is stale and stiff. If only coffee would go stiff like bread, we would then have an obvious indicator of whether the coffee is stale or not.

How can you tell if coffee is stale? Once you open the bag, can, brick, pod or super-infused nitrogen hypersensitive krypton pouch and the last gasp of freshness escapes into the atmosphere, the coffee has the aroma of cocoa in a matter of hours. Not a sweet chocolate smell, but an odor of cocoa. If you brew stale coffee it has a bitter taste. Of course if you load your coffee with cream and sugar, salt and eggshells, you will never taste the stale coffee.

To hide the stale coffee taste and to give the public a consistent sameness of taste and aroma, one of the tricks of the trade is to flavor the stale coffee with a coffee flavor. This is synonymous with coating week-old fish with a fresh-caught flavoring.

This is very popular in push-button coffee operations and a few national chains.

Coffee, if roasted correctly, has a mellow, sweet taste.

A single coffee bean should yield a spark of the caramelized sugars on the tip of your tongue. The portion of the roasted coffee to test this is the kernel within the husk of the coffee.

Don’t miss the third paragraph above, it’s a beauty!


  1. 8:41 pm // May 20, 2007

    Austin says:

    so then coffee roasted in november is straight out wrong.

  2. 9:37 pm // May 20, 2007

    Chris Tingom says:


  3. 7:14 am // May 21, 2007

    Michael T says:

    November is right out.

    I’d like to note that bitter coffee can come through milk. But I haven’t tried cream, sugar, salt, and eggshells.

  4. 6:12 pm // May 21, 2007

    Jason Haeger says:

    “The portion of the roasted coffee to test this is the kernel within the husk of the coffee.”

    Am I the only one who ever notices the tell-tale signs of “I have no clue what I’m talking about, but I’ll BS my way through it.”?

  5. 12:37 pm // May 28, 2007

    Adam Nollmeyer says:

    So very true! Thanks for the post Chris. I threw some stale coffee away just this week and it was a good feeling. Also, I see people make water with NASTY tap water. That’s no good either!

    It was also nice to see you at the Seth Godin event.


    Adam Nollmeyer
    Acme Photography – Web – Recent Images

  6. 1:45 pm // May 28, 2007

    Chris Tingom says:

    I’m glad you liked it, Adam. Good to see you there as well. You got better photos than I did. I have wide angles and thought I could get away without using a flash.

    The Dip is a good book and I’m almost finished reading it. Driving out to a BBQ now so I’ll try to finish it tonight.

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