4 Tricks For The Best Coffee You Can Brew

How to Make The Best CoffeeCoffee has been elevated to an art in some cultures. Coffee drinkers across the globe pride themselves on their coffee preparations, and if you ask, most will tell you their method makes the best coffee. The best coffee, it seems, may not be a matter of preparation method or ritualistic artifice but instead all about the amount of care that goes into the cup.

Whether you use a percolator that’s been in your family for generations, a Moka pot, pour over funnels, a French press, drip coffee pots, or a single cup coffee maker, the best coffee comes from ingredients that are fresh and proper care of your coffee preparation device of choice.

We’ve gathered four simple tricks to help you enjoy the best coffee possible whenever you brew your favorite bean.

4 Ways to Ensure the Best Coffee

Follow these simple methods and you are practically guaranteed to enjoy a better cup of coffee. These methods of coffee preparation allow for your favorite method of coffee brewing, but by following these guidelines, you ensure that you are getting the best out of your beans.

1. Fresh Coffee is Best Coffee

Avoid old beans. Fresh, whole bean coffee holds its flavor and avoids as much oxidation as ground coffee can experience. For the best coffee possible, buy fresh beans and grind them as close to the moment of brewing as possible.

2. Coffee Grind Coarseness Matters

Investing in a good coffee grinder can truly upgrade your coffee experience. How finely or coarsely you grind your coffee beans directly impacts your coffee extraction no matter what method you use to do so. Too finely ground coffee may be too strong while too coarsely ground coffee may taste weak. Find the grind that fits your preferences for full flavor at the strength you like.

3. Good Water Makes the Best Coffee

There are only two ingredients in a cup of black coffee, so the water you use to brew your coffee will have a direct impact on your coffee’s flavor, body, and extraction potential.  Use filtered water or bottled water to ensure a clean, full flavor. Further, experiment with the proportion of ground coffee to ensure you are using the right ratio for your taste preferences.

4. Clean Your Coffee Equipment

Whether you’re running the BMW of espresso machines every day or pouring a kettle of boiled water over a funnel full of grounds, popping K-Cups in a Keurig or putting prepackaged coffee pods into the company urn, you will get the best coffee from clean equipment. It is essential to clean your coffee equipment and to descale coffee makers regularly exposed to tap water.

5 Hottest Coffee Trends Right Now

Pour Over Coffee Latest Single Cup Coffee TrendCoffee is finding its rightful place amongst the gourmet crowd, gaining an appreciation amongst many on par with fine wine. It is moving away from the utilitarian work-motivator and finding a comfortable home in the world of the gastronomical arts. One result of this transition has been a boom in artisanal coffee roasters, and another has been the adoption of new coffee preparation techniques that ensure a fresher, better extraction.

Today, we’re going to have a look at some of the emerging trends in coffee today and identify the five hottest coffee trends. While coffee still serves a utilitarian role in many lives, you can enjoy better coffee via the many methods of coffee preparation currently  growing in popularity.

Five Coffee Trends Raising the Coffee Bar

The five coffee trends below cover a spectrum of professional and personal choices that are influencing the way people drink their coffee. Many are focused on the quality and freshness of the extraction, often with a desire to brew a single cup or smaller volume of coffee more effectively and delicious-tasting.

Micro Roasting Beans

Small batch roasting is spreading across the country as a growing trend. Coffee shops are micro roasting green coffee beans. Coffee roasters are using equipment to brew smaller, more consistent batches of coffee, much as New York Coffee does. This trend has gone so far that many coffee fanatics are starting to roast green coffee beans at home. You really can’t get any fresher than that.

Cold Brewed Coffee

The last couple of years have seen the rise of the cold brewed coffee. This is coffee brewed in room temperature or lower water for as much as 24 hours. The cold extraction of coffee compounds provides a smoother, less bitter extraction that many compare to dark chocolate. While this method involves patience, it results in such an excellent brew that many companies are now bottling and selling cold brew coffee.

Pour Over Coffee Brewing

Pour over coffee is gaining in popularity so quickly that coffee shops across the country are investing in pour over coffee equipment to meet the demands of consumers.  Pour over coffee brewing is accomplished by putting a coffee filter into a glass or ceramic funnel, packing it with ground coffee, and then pouring boiled water through the grounds for the freshest extraction possible. Pour over coffee enthusiasts rave about the coffee produced with this method and the Hario V60 ceramic funnel cone  or the Chemex glass pour over coffee maker.

Light Roast Coffee Popularity

Ever since Starbucks stormed the American coffee scene in the 90s, Americans have been drinking more and more dark roast coffee. The trend seems to be reversing after nearly twenty years of dark roast dominance. Developing American palates are seeking out more complex flavors and really seeking to taste the bean rather than the roast. Light roast coffee is the way to do it.

Single Cup Coffee Brewing

Fresh, fresh, fresh! That’s how people want their coffee these days, leaving behind old stale carafes of heated-all-day coffee and embracing a single cup of coffee brewed on demand. While some use the pour over method to accomplish this goal, many are turning to single cup coffee makers to enjoy a fresh brew that is easy and convenient. Keurig K-Cup coffee makers are leading the way with this trend, but many other brands are arriving on the market to meet this consumer demand.

CoffeeForLess One in a Million Contest

Coffee Contest and Coffee Price Gift Certificates

At CoffeeForLess, we often comment on the fact that the community of coffee drinkers that are our customers are the best part of our business other than the coffee itself. We mean it. We have had the privilege of working with one of our favorite things, coffee, thanks to our customers, and we often try to come up with ideas for how we can give back to the community that has made us a success.

Recently, we noticed that we are approaching a fantastic milestone: one million sales! This is a pretty big deal for a company that set out to provide online coffee sales at the best price possible, and we recognize that we couldn’t have done it without each and every customer.

So, in our eyes, each of you is one in a million, the rare find that makes us fortunate to have you as a customer and the reason, we believe, that we have enjoyed the success that we have. In order to celebrate this milestone and the coffee community that have made it possible, we are holding the One In A Million Celebration Contest.

One In A Million Contest Prizes

We’re really excited about this milestone at CoffeeForLess, so we really dug deep and came up with a great idea to show our appreciation to our customers. We’re pretty proud of what we decided to do.

The customer whose purchase is our one-millionth sale will receive a CoffeeForLess gift certificate for $1,000. That’s a lot of coffee or a great upgrade to your current home or office coffee maker and still a lot of coffee! The 999,998th, 999,999th, 1,000,001st, and 1,000,002nd sales will earn their purchasers a $50 CoffeeForLess gift certificate. (Naturally, terms and conditions apply.)

The one million sale celebration doesn’t end there. Not only is CoffeeForLess giving away five prizes to our coffee-loving customers, we’re also going to offer a 10% discount code on the One in a Million Contest page when we reach one million sales. This CoffeeForLess coupon code will expire 11:59PM on Sunday, June 30th, 2013, so be sure to check the page often to take advantage of the discount or sign up for our promotional emails to get updates on this contest and other sales in the future.

We are excited to share this milestone with our community of customers. You can bet that we’ll continue to offer the best prices on your favorite coffee, teas, single cup coffee refills, coffee makers, and beverage service accessories for the next million sales too!

Green Coffee Beans Found to Help Diabetes and Weight Loss

Green Coffee Beans Cause Weight LossThe words of the day are “chlorogenic acid,” a natural substance found in green coffee beans. Scientists have been studying this substance in an attempt to understand its effect on the human body. Multiple studies have been done on chlorogenic acid, but two were published in the last few weeks that have potentially huge ramifications for those who enjoy coffee and those who suffer from either obesity or type 2 diabetes.

The chlorogenic acid in green coffee beans is a naturally occurring chemical that can be found in many fruits and vegetables, including apples, cherries, and plums. It appears to have little to no side effects when applied to the body in concentrated doses, and this fact has led to multiple studies being done as to its medical uses. What science is discovering is that the chlorogenic acid found so concentrated in green coffee beans seems to have significant positive health effects on metabolic processes.

Unfortunately, chlorogenic acid is mostly destroyed by the high heat used to roast coffee beans. Some of it does make it to your mug, though, giving it some positive health impact. To experience the full health benefits discussed below, one must take a concentrated extract of green coffee beans. Nobody recommends brewing green beans, though that would be a healthful tonic, because unroasted coffee beans have a very bitter, strongly sour, even grassy taste to them.

Health Benefits of Green Coffee Bean Extracts

Type 2 diabetes is a growing epidemic in the United States, one that affects more than 90 percent of the 26 million Americans with diabetes. A study on the body’s physiological response to green coffee bean extracts was the result of Dr. Joe Vinson observing that those who drank seven or more cups of coffee a day experienced a 50 percent risk reduction for type 2 diabetes compared to those who drank just two cups of coffee a day. This led Dr. Vinson on a quest to uncover what about coffee decreased the risk of type 2 diabetes. What he found was multiple studies that had shown that unroasted coffee bean extract had a regulating effect on blood sugar regulation. He studied this effect in further detail with excellent outcomes, resulting in as much as a 30 percent reduction in blood-glucose at just a daily 400mg extract dosage. Further, those who received the extract experienced weight loss.

With that in mind, Vinson did another study, studying the effects of green coffee beans on weight loss specifically, and what he found is good news to everyone looking to get ready for that summer beach body. Participants lost an average of 17 pounds of body mass in just 22 weeks. This amounted to a 10.5 percent decrease in overall body weight and a 16 percent decrease in body fat. These results were accomplished with no significant lifestyle changes other than the addition of green coffee bean extracts ranging from 700 to 1,050mgs dosage daily. Vinson simply connected the dots between his previous study and other studies that had shown that green coffee beans cause weight loss.

The good news for everyone is that there may be even more health benefits to green coffee beans yet uncovered, and while drinking roasted coffee daily may reduce the amount of those benefits received, a lesser percentage of those healthful compounds finds its way into every single cup that you brew.

Dunkin’ Donuts Employee Uses Hot Coffee As Weapon

Quick thinking on the part of a Dunkin’ Donuts employee and minimal thinking on the part of a would-be crook has taken the Internet by storm. A failed robbery and hot coffee used in self-defense make for good water cooler chat, and this Dunkin' Donuts robbery story has it all. Quick thinking heroism, dumb criminals, and our favorite beverage standing in as the weapon that vanquished the criminal.

The scene opened on the Dunkin’ Donuts drive through window seen from the vantage of a security camera. A man in a light-colored hooded sweatshirt asked the Dunkin’ Donuts employee to make change for a $100 bill, and when the worker refused, the man announced his intention to rob the Dunkin’ Donuts from the drive through. He then attempted to climb out of the window of his vehicle and into the drive through service window, reaching into his pocket for what we must assume was a weapon.

Thinking quickly, our donut shop hero threw the man’s hot coffee in his face and attempted to close the service window. When the man’s now-seared bulk blocked the window from closing, the employee grabbed a pot of hot coffee and tossed the steaming Dunkin’ Donuts coffee at the man who’d had enough and drove off. Watch it yourself in the video embedded below.

Coffee: 1, Crime: 0. Hopefully the lesson this crook takes away from this experience is that drive through crime doesn’t pay.

Donut House Coffee At CoffeeForLess

Let us celebrate this heroic donut shop coffee warrior with a mug of delicious donut-shop-style coffee for Keurig K-Cup brewers. Green Mountain Coffee has recently revamped their Donut House line of classic coffee K-Cups. These K-Cups attempt to capture the traditional taste of American donut shop counter service coffee, though we cannot guarantee that they make quite as effective of a self-defense plan as the coffee flung at the failed robber. What we can guarantee is that Green Mountain Coffee has truly composed classic donut shop tastes in these K-Cup coffees.

Green Mountain Coffee Donut House Coffee K-Cups are a light roast coffee that is available in both regular and decaffeinated K-Cups. It has a smooth, light roast coffee flavor with piquant acid notes and a mildly astringent aftertaste. It hearkens to classic American coffee roasts found at any diner or donut shop during the 20th Century.

Flavored coffee fans will certainly enjoy the two Green Mountain Coffee Donut House Flavored Coffee K-Cups available. Green Mountain Coffee Donut House Chocolate Glazed Donut Flavored Coffee K-Cups are delicious, combining cocoa-rich chocolate donut and sweet glazed icing flavors with smooth, light roast coffee! If you enjoy the pairing of a buttery, spiced cinnamon bun and coffee, then try Green Mountain Donut House Cinnamon Roll Flavored Coffee K-Cups. This coffee brews fresh every time with the aroma of actual cinnamon buns baking in an oven. The combination of brown sugar, cinnamon, and vanilla glaze icing flavors with coffee is excellent.

Grow Your Own Coffee From Green Coffee Beans

Green Coffee Beans are Coffee SeedsDo you absolutely love coffee? Odds are that you love coffee if you read this blog. Some of us who love coffee very much find that having a coffee plant in our house is a wondrous way to be close to the plant that provides our daily perkiness. If you are that in love with coffee, then don’t worry. You are in good company. Many people grow coffee at home or even in their yard (if they have no frost) and find the experience fun and rewarding.

Coffee is a tropical tree that grows well as a bush if trimmed correctly. It has large, waxy leaves like most tropical pants and requires mottled light, which is to say indirect sunlight or lower levels of artificial light. It grows much as most any other tropical plant we keep as houseplants does, and although it calls for much care in the beginning, it can actually be a relatively low-maintenance plant once established.

What many don’t know is that you can attempt to grow a coffee plant from green coffee beans of your favorite variety. These beans are older than those you’d buy from a greenhouse or seed store and are therefore prone to lower germination rates and extended germination times, but if you are already buying green coffee beans or just want to try a little coffee-growing experiment, they are a fun way to try to grow a coffee plant.

From Green Coffee Beans to a Coffee Bush

Grow Coffee Plants from Coffee BeansGreen coffee beans bought commercially rather than from a specialty plant store are older, having been processed and shipped through the manufacturing process. So, if you are truly serious about growing a coffee plant, you may want to buy a seedling or a fresh coffee bean online or at a nursery. However, for fun, you can take a handful of green coffee beans and soak them in water. The freshest, most viable ones will sprout, possibly within 24 hours but possibly over the course of days. These sprouted seeds are your best bet from your green coffee beans.

Honestly, soak a handful of beans from your bag of green coffee beans in water, and then select the ones that sprout tails to plant in rich, yet well-draining soil. The better the soil, the better your chances of attaining a coffee bush because the next part is the hard part.

It could take months, as many as three months for the coffee plant to get itself well-established enough to be considered hearty as a houseplant. During this time, the germinated green coffee bean needs a lot of careful attention. Do not overwater it, but do not underwater it. The soil should remain moist but never swampy. Keep the potted green bean in a room temperature environment, approximately 70 degrees Fahrenheit, and wait patiently.

The plant is very slow moving at the seedling stage, and during this stage is when most everything can go wrong. You want to avoid letting the soil harbor the wrong organisms yet damp enough for the seedling to thrive.

The first set of leaves, or seed leaves, don’t look like coffee plant leaves, but they start the food production process for the plant, leading soon to waxy, lovely coffee leaves. While this might be a roundabout way to grow your favorite plant, the plant is beautiful and easy to maintain once fully grown. General care instructions are just about the same as those for camellia bushes or plants.

Coffee Shops and Food Service Establishments Popularize Green Convenience

Save the Planet with Corn Plastic Compostable CupsAs consumers grow more aware of the impact of their consumption decisions, businesses across the country are racing to find consumer-friendly replacements for conveniences that most consumers have come to expect. Not since the battling burger giants’ rejection of Styrofoam has there been such a shift in consumer expectation.

Today’s cafes, coffee shops, and restaurants have more opportunity to replace currently expected disposable conveniences with more environmentally friendly alternatives, and the price differences are shrinking every day as demand drives competition for the environmentally-friendly food service supplies market.

Compostable Cups, Plant-Derived Plastics, Disposable Beverage Services Go Green

Today’s consumers love to know their disposable conveniences are in line with their environmental outlook. So, when your customers see that your company invests in such corn plastic cold beverage cups as those made by Eco-Products or Savannah, they feel their money is being spent at an establishment that cares about the future.

A cup of coffee served in a Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Ecotainer Cup shows the buyer of that coffee that they are contributing a biodegradable cup to the landfill. A Savannah Bagasse Cup is made from biodegradable sugar cane fiber, making it an excellent choice for hot beverage service.

Compostable Plates and Cups Break Down With TimeEven food service options today provide a variety of environmentally-conscious disposable food service options. Eco-Products produces both disposable compostable bowls and disposable compostable plates. Seventh Generation Napkins are made from recycled paper pulp, making them a green choice when it comes to disposable napkins.

While replacing outdated disposable beverage service or food service products may be good for the planet, it is also a great marketing move for your business. Meeting today’s conscious consumer where they are comfortable makes them more likely to identify with your business or services, and that ensures repeat business.

It’s easier than ever to advertise your business’s green efforts thanks to products that are at the cutting edge of convenience science.

Central American Coffee Prices Likely To Rise

Central American Coffee Bean Shortages Due To FungusCentral American coffee growers are rushing to contain the spread of a coffee-eating fungus that has taken root in the region as events associated with global climate change have made the region an ideal home to the fungus. The hemilea vastatrix fungus thrives in the hot temperatures and drought conditions that the Central America experienced throughout 2012 and into the 2013 coffee harvest.

The fungus is known as “leaf rust” due to its tendency to dry up coffee leaves, causing them to discolor a rusty orange. The fungus is estimated to have impacted as much as 35% of the sown crops throughout Central America and may cause a loss of $300 million in crops. Governments from Costa Rica to Guatemala are rushing to contain and combat the invader.

What the leaf rust fungus means to coffee consumers the world over is a scarcity of Central American coffee and a general rise likely in coffee prices as this region struggles to meet world coffee demand.

Regions Affected and Central American Coffee Beans To Stock Up On

Price changes in agricultural goods like coffee beans tend to lag behind real-world events, so price fluctuations have not quite reached the market. This makes now a good time to stock up on coffee from regions that are likely to experience scarcity due to the leaf rust fungus. Stock up now and save money one coffee that is likely to be more expensive from the following regions:

Millstone Nicaraguan Coffee BeansNicaraguan Coffee

Millstone Organic Fair Trade Nicaraguan Mountain Twilight Blend Coffee Beans

Guatemalan Coffee

Barrie House Guatemalan Coffee BeansNew York Coffee Guatemala Antigua Green Coffee Beans

New York Coffee Guatemala Antigua SWP Decaf Ground Coffee

Barrie House S.H.B Guatemalan Coffee Beans

El Salvadoran Coffee

New York Coffee El Salvador Peaberry Coffee BeansCosta Rican Coffee Fresh Packs

Costa Rican Coffee

New York Coffee Costa Rica Ground Coffee

New York Coffee Costa Rica Tarrazu SWP Decaf Ground Coffee

Costa Rica Coffee Fresh Packs

Is Elephant Poo Coffee From Thailand The Next Kopi Luwak?

Entrepreneur Blake Dinkin thinks he has found the next hot trend in pre-digested coffee beans: the elephant. His unique coffee growing, harvesting, and roasting process uses this mammoth mammal to hand(trunk?)-select coffee beans at the height of their ripeness, pass them through this intrepid coffee harvester, and then hand(truly)-select the beans from the excrement of the elephant before roasting.

Alright, if you are still reading, then you might have the stomach for such a coffee product, and you probably already know about Kopi Luwak coffee beans and the civet cat. Kopi Luwak coffee is one of the most expensive coffees in the world, mostly due to the rarity created by the process involved in harvesting these coffee beans from the leavings of the civet cat. The beans, however, are transformed by the digestive enzymes of the civet and passed whole, the civet having digested the coffee berry from which it derives nutrition.

Blake Dinkin took nine years to develop the process by which his Black Ivory Coffee beans are produced, assuring those who think it is a gag coffee that his intent is quite serious. To the naysayers who are grossed out by this new breed of enzymatically-altered coffee bean, he suggests we remember that “honey is bee’s vomit and no one has a problem with that,” and he may be onto something. Kopi Luwak coffee received much the same reception but has remained a highly prized coffee variety.

Elephant Dung Coffee, Cat Poo Coffee, Racoon and Laboratory Coffee?

This trend of coffee altered through the chemistry of herbivores’ digestive tracts is not going away. In fact, it seems to be growing in popularity. As more coffee drinkers consume the oddly smooth, rounded flavor of these altered coffee beans and come to desire the traits that they possess, investment in finding ways to produce more coffee beans of such a caliber is likely to continue.

In Peru, coffee growers have begun harvesting the droppings Peruvian coati raccoons, a native animal that consumes the coffee berries in the region much as the civet cat does in Indonesia.  Perhaps truly the future of enzymatically altered coffee, a laboratory at the University of Florida has attempted to alter coffee beans by laboratory means that emulate the digestive processes involved in the digestive tracts of the civet cat to produce laboratory-made Kopi Luwak coffee.

By whatever means this type of altered coffee bean is produced, the coffee is regularly considered some of the finest tasting on the market. It is prized for its reduced acidity, smooth flavor with rich, cocoa notes, and full bodied character.

While we may one day move away from treating coffee beans with a good pre-digestion and toward a less natural, more laboratory-based process, the trend of animal harvested and processed coffee beans is likely to continue. The process highlights the tastes and experiences that define good coffee, so coffee producers around the world are likely to look a bit closer at the droppings of the native inhabitants of their coffee farms.