What you must know about coffee

1.  A bag of fresh coffee is not fresh coffee if the roasted date is not written somewhere on the bag.  Check out all the supposedly fresh coffees in your grocery store.  They will have a "best by" date - usually a year or so down the road.  Roasted coffee beans only stay fresh for around two weeks following the date they were roasted.  Some may last a little longer.  Once you start drinking fresh coffee, you can immediately notice a lack of freshness.

2.  Good coffee is going to be known as "speciality coffee," which will always be Arabica beans (as opposed to Robusta beans which are usually intended for the bulk, lower quality market) grown by farmers who are purposefully working hard to produce high-quality beans.  Because they are higher quality, they are more expensive.  Therefore, you are not generally going to find them in mass-produced coffee brands.

3.  Green coffee beans stay fresh for a long period of time under the right conditions.  However, once roasted, coffee beans must be consumed quickly.  They should remain as whole beans for as long as possible.  Once ground, they will stale very quickly.  As such, they should only be ground immediately prior to brewing.  The two enemies of whole coffee beans are oxygen and sunlight.  They should be sealed in a bag for as long as possible, and once opened, kept in a dark enclosed space.  They should not be kept in the freezer.

4.  Brewing great coffee beans is up to you.  You can use a variety of methods.  Our favorites are the french press and the chemex pour-over methods.  You should experiment with different brewing methods to find the type of brew which best suits you. You can experiment with different water temperatures, water to coffee ratios, and grind styles.  It is best to use a more expensive grinder with "burrs" and which have adjustable grind levels.  As with many other things, the "buy once, cry once" rule is in effect.  Coffee is such an important part of your day, every day, why not spend the extra bucks to make it right?