Coffee: Fresh Roasted or Not Fresh Roasted?

Question: Which coffee is better, Fresh Roasted Coffee or Roasted Coffee that is more than 6 weeks old.

Fresh Roasted Coffee is a catch cry used by many Australian and New Zealand Coffee Roasting companies. Fresh roasted coffee is a term used to describe coffee that is brewed and served within 1 to 14 days of roasting. After roasting and when it has cooled, the fresh coffee is still releasing CO2 gas for up to 6 weeks. If you look at the front of most coffee bags, you’ll see a 2 cm wide 1 way valve. This releases the gas when it builds up, while not allowing oxygen to flow back into the bag. These gases can give the coffee a sharper and slightly bitter constitution, sometimes it can also give you the impression that it’s a stronger coffee. After roasting, Fresh Roasted coffee will mature and present different characteristics week by week.

The Australian and New Zealand coffee industry is a milk based coffee market, whereas the Italian coffee industry is mostly based on the short black espresso market. 95% or more of our cafe industry is based around milk based coffees and as such you need that sharpness to burst thru the milky base for the coffee to shine thru. Most cafe’s will only be serving one blend of coffee at a time and this will normally be a fresh roasted variety, apart from the cafe’s that use imported coffee beans.

Coffee companies will variably label these fresh roasted coffees as Single Origin and/or 100% Arabica Coffee.These are labels that have probably originated in Australia and New Zealand. If you ask for a short black espresso using fresh roasted coffee, you might be disappointed as most blends are designed for milk coffee’s.There are exceptions and there are cafe’s that will have another grinder with a milder/softer blend that will be used to grind coffee for the espresso drinker. However that’s rare and normally it will be a cafe owned by an Australian/New Zealander with Italian or European heritage.

There are some wonderful Fresh Roasted Coffee from local Roasters that will suit most customers tastes. We cannot expect every blend to be everything for everyone.

Fresh Roasted Coffee is sensational for most milk based drinks and sometimes ideal for espresso short black drinkers.

Imported Italian Roasted and Blended Coffee is another variety of Coffee that you will find available in Australia and New Zealand. These blends generally use South American Plantation beans as do some of the local roasters. However over 90% of Italian roasted coffee beans imported into Australia and New Zealand are blends of Arabica and Robusta beans.

The blending of the 2 varieties is the time in the roasting process where the master roaster can be his most creative. They blend the 2 varieties of beans to attain a balance of Aroma, Body, Character and Strength. The Arabica bean variety provides you your beautiful Aromas and individual characteristics, whereas the Robusta Beans(which have twice the caffeine content of the Arabica Beans)provide the Body and the Strength of the coffee.

Espresso Coffee sold in bars and restaurants in Italy are usually a blend of the 2 varieties and generally speaking, it maybe around 80% Arabica and 20% of Robusta Beans. For stronger coffee, more of the Robusta variety of bean is added to the blend,  They will have 50/50 blends and for milk based drinks they will have blends of up to 70% of Robusta and 30% Arabica beans, as an example.The Italians generally speaking, won’t brew the beans and drink the coffee before it’s 6 weeks old and that’s after most of the COgas has dissipated. After 6 weeks old, you would then have a clearer impression of that coffee blends’ real potential.

Italian Roasted Coffee is sensational for espresso coffee’s and when blended with a larger portion of Robusta beans, it can be ideal for milk based drinks.

Now the question was, which one is better: Fresh Roasted or Not Fresh Roasted?

Answer = Neither. 

Enjoy the coffee that makes you the happiest. Have it straight, have it with milk, soy, have it with or without sugar,have it short, have it long, have instant or decaf coffee if you like that. Individually, we all have different tastes and no one can tell you what you will like.

The beauty in the taste of coffee is in the taste buds of the beholder.

It doesn’t matter how you like it, as long as you’re enjoying it and if you don’t then try another blend until you find the one for you. We all sometimes try and over complicate the simple things in life. JUST kick back and have a coffee, any way you like.

An Opinion Piece from

Paul R.

Coffee Supplies Australia