About Our Beans
Bean selection: The Coffees we select are from the world’s finest Arabica beans. These top-quality beans are milder and more flavorful but also more expensive than the harsher Robusta variety. Robusta beans are predominantly used in canned and instant coffees. The world’s coffee growing regions can be found in a relatively narrow band near the equator. Highest quality coffees are usually grown at altitudes over four thousand feet. Climate, soil conditions, plant treatment and processing techniques all play a key roll in creating a coffee’s flavor profile.
Tasting: Before purchasing, beans are test roasted in a sample batch, ground and then brewed. The resulting brew is taste tested to determine its quality. This process called cupping, involves careful, expert evaluation of each sample for a long list of flavor characteristics. Landmark Coffee Beans are selected and cupped exclusively by experts with generations of experience.
The roaster and the process: Roasting fine coffee is truly an art. One of the most critical elements is using equipment which perfectly controls the temperature and duration of the roast process. The correct ratio of temperature to time (roast profile) is critical in optimizing the flavor characteristics of any given variety of coffee bean. Landmark coffee is roasted exclusively by experienced professionals who know the exact roast profile for dozens of different coffees and blends. After thousands of roasts, they have developed an “instinctual feel” for the look and aroma of all our coffees and blends in every stage of roasting.
Coffee changes during roasting: During the roasting process, many complex flavor components in the beans are developed. For example, carbohydrates within the bean become caramelized. The darker the roast, the more caramelization occurs and the darker the beans become. Also, moisture in the beans vaporizes and CO2 gases are formed causing the beans to “puff-up” and become brittle. This also means that the darker the roast, the bigger and lighter weight the beans become. Dark beans look shiny because the longer, hotter roasting causes oils trapped within the beans to be released and drawn to the surface. All of these changes profoundly affect the flavor of the coffee in the brewing process.
Once roasted, coffee beans need to be handled properly to yield a great tasting cup. Please click on grinding, storing and packaging.
Acidity The pleasant tartness of a fine coffee. Acid also describes coffee components which produce indigestion or nervousness in some individuals.
Aroma Describes the odor of freshly brewed coffee.
Body The sense of heaviness, richness or thickness when one tastes coffee.
Bright Describes a lively mouth feel.
Cupping Coffee A trade phrase describing the art of extracting and tasting flavors from a small amount of ground beans brewed in a clear glass. This is the truest method to appraise good and bad characteristics in beans by taste and sight.
Flavor What distinguishes the taste of coffee once its acidity, body and aroma have been described.
Light Describes a thin, bright flavor.
Mellow Sweet bodied and smooth.
Rich A full, heavy, sweet flavor.
Sweet Free from harshness in flavor.
Winey Distinct and fruit-like taste.
Earthy The tones that reflect soil characteristics.
Perfect Cup Checklist
Store beans in an airtight container on your shelf for use within 3 weeks. For long-term storage (up to 3 months), keep the beans in the original bag in your freezer. Be sure to zip it tightly closed and squeeze out all the air before putting it in. To limit flavor robbing condensation, remove beans from the freezer as seldom as possible. Frozen beans do not need to be thawed before grinding and brewing. Never store whole bean or ground coffee in the refrigerator. Condensation and odors from other foods will harm its flavor.
Grind only enough for immediate brewing. Ground coffee loses its flavor much faster than whole beans. Grind coffee to the consistency of coarse sand (approx). Please note: Too fine = bitter; Too coarse = weak.
Measure one rounded tablespoon per 6 oz. of water. Use more or less to adjust to your personal taste.
Brew using a drip type brewer if possible (except for cappuccino and espresso). Start with a clean brewer and fresh good-tasting water. Your brewer should be rinsed thoroughly after each use (residue causes bitterness). Water temperature should be between 180–200° F.
Serve immediatley after brewing. Store brewed coffee in an insulated carafe or airpot. Do no reheat coffee or keep it on a heat source for long. Reheating will ruin its flavor.