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Coffee to suit every lifestyle

Date Added: December 11, 2019 05:32:46 AM

We’ve all got our own guilty pleasures, and for many of us these days, coffee is among the top things we love to indulge in. Buying ourselves a latte or cappuccino once a day doesn’t sound like much, but over a week, multiplied by 12 months, it can be an expensive habit. There are many coffee roasters, producers and sellers to choose from and each brand hosts its own varieties of coffee with unique flavour notes and textures. Let’s have a look at the different types of coffee we can consume, and understand more about the processes involved in coffee production.

Instant coffee

In this world of ‘instant’ everything, we can start to lack patience when it comes to basic necessities - such as waiting for a drink to be made or food to arrive, for example. For those of us who have less time to focus on making the highest quality coffee but don’t want to miss out on it completely, instant coffee is our saving grace. You may have heard of instant coffee be called something else, such as ‘coffee powder’, ‘soluble coffee’, or ‘crystal coffee’.

Some argue that ‘it’s not real coffee’ because it is so processed that it can be stripped of some of the caffeine content which we all crave. To an extent, that is true, but that’s not to say it won’t satisfy our tastebuds and give us a wake-up buzz first thing in the morning. As with anything ‘fast’, the quality and health grading won’t be amazing but, made well, instant coffee can give you the same enjoyable fix you could pay for in a cafe.

In case you were wondering about the processes involved in its production, here’s a little insight. Spray-dried coffee is one of the ways instant coffee is made, wherein liquid coffee is sprayed as a fine mist whilst moving through very hot, very dry air. By the time the coffee droplets land, they will have dried into a powder. This powder is then put into packaging to be sold in stores.

The second method is freeze-drying. The coffee beans are cooked down into an extract. The extract is then chilled at about 20 degrees F into a coffee ‘slushie’. This is then chilled further on a belt, drum or tray, at around -40 degrees F. This freezing process creates slabs of coffee ‘ice’ which gets broken into granules. Those granules are then sent to a drying vacuum, where the ice vaporises, leaving instant coffee granules behind for packaging and consumption.

So, as you can see, there is coffee in the instant coffee, but it’s highly processed so that we can simply add water and consume it quickly!

Filter and plunger coffee

Fresher than instant coffee, the filter, and plunger kind is a great option for those of us who like to control the strength, heat, and depth of flavour in our cup, and want to know we are drinking something less processed. Though still a powder, this kind of coffee hasn’t been stripped of those deeper, richer flavours and caffeine hits. It doesn’t dissolve instantly and therefore needs the interception of filtering and plunging before being turned into something drinkable.

If you enjoy watching your coffee brew and absorbing the rich scent as the steam rises, this kind of coffee is perfect for you. One of the biggest benefits is being able to make larger batches of coffee to drink over a prolonged period of time.

Coffee pods & home espresso machines

For busy people, there’s nothing more exciting than waking up knowing you can create your very own cafe-quality coffee without the hassle of waiting in a queue or forking out megabucks. 

One of the greatest perks of espresso machine coffee is the vast array of options available to try out. With differing caffeine strengths and flavour combinations, coffee capsules cater to almost every taste.

A coffee pod is also known as the coffee equivalent of a tea bag and requires a similar process to a manual filtering process (so, basically, it’s the automated equivalent). Inside each pod is ground coffee powder, and as the hot water passes through the pod walls, the coffee strains through the filters and pours smoothly into your mug.

Pods are the next best thing down from spending a fiver on a coffee in your local coffee shop - and many espresso machines come with a mechanism designed for heating and frothing milk in the same way, too!

Coffee shop beverages

Coffee shops use professional machines that produce high-concentrated coffee shots which can then be added to frothed milk or cream. When poured elegantly into a mug or takeaway cup, we struggle to talk ourselves out of paying 5$ for it, even though it wouldn’t have cost much to make. This method of coffee production requires the least amount of processing - beans often go straight from being ground, to having contact with hot water as to become drinkable. This is why you pay more - because of the strength of the coffee and fullness in flavour.

Many coffee shops have flavoured syrups and exciting spices to add to drinks to make them all the more appealing (not that we need much convincing to drink it!).

There are various different ways to make and enjoy coffee, and they don’t all require a separate savings account. For a quick fix that has the strength and taste of freshly-ground beans, experiment with different brands of instant coffee. You can find all kinds of flavour combinations, and some that don’t require milk so you can enjoy it on the go a lot more easily. Plunger and filter coffee are great for those who enjoy the brewing process and producing more coffee to indulge in over extended periods of time. If you love (and can afford) the luxury of cafe-style coffee but want to indulge in it at a fraction of the price, look at investing in an espresso machine. But, if you simply cannot resist your favourite coffee shop coffees, you know where to go!