When it comes to coffee, there are two main types of roasts: light roast and dark roast. While both roasts make an excellent cup of coffee, they each have distinct features that make them unique. To help you make the perfect cup, we’ve outlined everything you need to know about the differences between light roast and dark roast.
Amount of Caffeine Per Cup
While many people are under the impression that one type of roast has more caffeine than the other, this is not actually the case. Since a bean’s caffeine content stays relatively stable throughout the roasting process, the difference between light roast coffee caffeine content and dark roast is minimal.
However, a caffeine variance between the two roasts can occur depending on how you measure out your coffee. During the roasting process the bean expands, becoming larger and lighter the longer it is roasted. Due to this, dark roast beans are significantly different in size and weight when compared to light roast beans. These differences come into play when the beans are brewed into coffee.
If you equally measure out your beans with a scoop, there will be a caffeine difference between the two roasts. This is because darker beans are larger, meaning that there will be less in each scoop, therefore less caffeine in each cup. This variance can be overcome by measuring out the beans by weight. By measuring the beans by weight, rather than volume, you are able to ensure that each cup has an equal amount of caffeine.
Prior to roasting, green coffee beans have an earthy smell and little or no taste - not exactly the makings of a good cup of coffee. It is only during the roasting process that beans develop the smell and taste that we’ve come to love. The length of time the bean is roasted plays a big role in the flavors that come out when brewed, with light roast tasting significantly different than dark.
With light roast, the beans are roasted for less time, which means that the original flavors of the bean are preserved. When drinking a light roast coffee, you are able to taste the distinct differences between beans grown in different parts of the world - the lighter the roast, the more readily you can identify these differences. If you enjoy taking your palate on a trip around the world, light roast should be your go-to.
Dark roast, on the other hand, has a flavor that is brought out during the longer roasting process. The longer the beans are roasted, the darker and richer the flavor. If you enjoy coffee with a chocolate-y, caramel-y or even smoky taste, dark roast is for you.
The type of roast you use depends on your taste preferences, but some roasts are used more commonly than other for specific drinks. Dark roast beans tend to be used most often for espresso and espresso based beverages. This is because dark roast beans are generally less acidic, making them better suited to dairy-based drinks. Conversely, light roast coffee is more common with pour over and drip brews as these more delicate brewing processes bring our the distinct flavors of the beans. However, it’s important to remember that there is no right or wrong roast to use for any given drink – it all depends on which you prefer!
While both light and dark roast coffee beans make a delicious cup of coffee, understanding their differences can help you choose the taste you desire. Armed with this knowledge, you’ll be ready and able to make the perfect cup of coffee to suit your coffee drinking mood.
At Real Good Coffee Co we use our best beans to bring you an amazing cup of coffee no matter your preference. Shop your flavor with us.