If you’re a coffee lover like me, you’ve probably heard of the mysterious ‘Black Coffee.’ Many have heard of it, many have tried it, but only a few have achieved success in drinking it on a daily basis.
If you want to become one of those legendary black coffee enthusiasts, and level up your coffee palate; keep reading ahead.
In this article, I’m going to teach you the ways of the black coffee.
So my fellow coffee lovers! Let’s get started.
What Is Black Coffee?
First, a bit of a quick introduction.
Any coffee without dairy products – milk, whipped cream, yoghurt, condensed milk – is called Black Coffee.
Some coffee fans won’t even accept sweeteners. It’s that pure. It’s also a great challenge to make or brew good black coffee, but coffee enthusiasts still do it on a daily basis. Maybe, it’s the never ending addiction, or the exotic flavor. Whatever it is, the bitterness won’t stop the black coffee lovers from drinking it and appreciating it.
What Does Black Coffee Taste Like?
So why do we add milk, sugar, and cream to our coffee? It’s so that we can cover the bitterness of the coffee with other ingredients, and tastes.
But, that’s not supposed to be the case. Pure black coffee isn’t supposed to taste so wrong, that you have to wait for a whole 3 seconds before every sip, and then force the new sip.
The thing that really matters is that coffee tastes delicious to YOU. Everybody has a different taste; some like bitterness, others like acidity, while some want something in between.
In general coffee has some ratio of these subtle tastes.
- Aroma (flowery, fruity, nutty, chocolaty, herbal etc.)
In other words, the taste is exotic.
Of course, all this is masked with heavy flavours of milk and cream, a lot of the time. But that’s not the case for black coffee.
A cup of black coffee contains all these tastes and flavours, minus the additives and dairy.
What Factors Affect the Taste of Black Coffee?
The taste of the black coffee depends on:
- Coffee type
- Coffee roast
- Grind size
- Brewing methods
- Coffee strength
Once you find your perfect black coffee, you’ll be able to appreciate the pure flavor, without corrupting it with flavors of milk, cream or sugar.
How To Drink Black Coffee and Enjoy It – Never Go Back
Getting used to black coffee isn’t a piece of cake. You’ve got to work for it. And with that, work hard. It’s a slow process. But if you’re willing to put in the effort and investment into learning to love black coffee, you can do it.
Once you’re able to formulate your perfect black coffee recipe, you won’t be able to go back. That’s how coffee works. It’s supposed to taste scrumptious even in its purest form.
Here’s how you can get used to black coffee faster and learn to enjoy it.
Reduce Milk, Cream and Sugar Bit by Bit
The reason why people can’t drink black coffee immediately is that the change is drastic. Change naturally feels uncomfortable to humans. Their everyday coffee is so milky, or creamy, that when they drink black coffee, the only thing they can taste is bitterness.
A way of getting used to drinking black coffee, is to make the change gradual. Decrease the dairy, and sweet content of the coffee bit by bit, until your cup takes the form of black coffee.
- Use ¾ tea spoons of sugar, and ¾ parts of milk you normally use, and drink it for 3 days.
- Then use ½ tea spoons of sugar and ½ parts of milk you normally use, and drink it for another 3 days.
- Continue this process, until your coffee reaches the status of black coffee.
There you go. This way, getting used to black coffee becomes a piece of cake.
Use Your Favourite Coffee Beans
Every individual has a different taste. Your taste is unique to you and ONLY you. If you want to become a regular black coffee drinker, and also enjoy it, you’ll have to use coffee that you like.
Choose a coffee whose aroma, flavours and tastes go hand in hand with your preferences. Do you like chocolate aromas, or maybe you like your coffee nutty. Whatever it is, choose what tastes best to you.
There are two main categories of coffee beans. They further have many more types.
These beans come from the Coffea Arabica plant.
- Aroma – The aroma ranges from chocolate, nuts and caramel, to even fruits and berries.
- Sweetness – There’s a bit of sweetness in the flavour. It has more sugar.
- Acidity – It has pleasant levels of acidity.
- Bitterness – It’s less bitter than Robusta.
- Caffeine – It has less caffeine than Robusta.
Arabica is considered higher quality, and more expensive as compared to Robusta.
Robusta beans come from the Coffea Canephora plant.
- Aroma – Robusta coffee has an earthy, grainy, or peanutty aroma.
- Sweetness – It’s way less sweet than Arabica.
- Acidity – It has lower acidity levels than Arabica.
- Bitterness – Robusta coffee is more bitter than Arabica probably due to the caffeine.
- Caffeine – It contains almost 25% more caffeine than Arabica coffee.
Robusta is reputed as lower quality than Arabica. It’s also cheaper.
Find The Best Grind Size For A Black Coffee
You might be wondering, why does grind size matter? Coffee is coffee, right? Well, no. Grind size is what controls the acidity and bitterness of coffee, which is what makes or breaks your coffee experience.
Here’s the difference between coarse and fine grind. But you could definitely go for something in between.
Coarse grind has larger chunks of beans. The surface area for the coffee contents to seep into the water is less. So coarse grind is less strong. The acidity and bitterness is not as much as you would get in a finer grind.
- Acidity – Low
- Bitterness – Low
The surface area of fine grind is a lot more than the coarse grind. So of course the acidity levels and bitterness would be high, as well as the flavor and aroma.
- Acidity – High
- Bitterness – High
Find The Best Grind Roast
Roasts, just like grinds, also affect the acidity and flavour of your coffee. The lighter roasts are more acidic than darker roasts.
Anyways, there are three main levels of coffee roasts. However, things can go in between depending on the preference.
Light roasted beans are light brown in color, with a non-oily surface. The flavor and aroma of light roast black coffees come from the uniqueness of the beans, rather than roasting itself.
- Acidity – High
- Bitterness – Low
Medium roast is the perfect hybrid between light and dark roast. It’s the most popular kind of roast, as the flavours are neither too acidic, nor too bitter. The color of the coffee beans is medium brown.
- Acidity – Medium
- Bitterness – Medium
Dark roasted beans are dark brown in color. The surface of the beans is extremely oily. The flavor mostly comes from the roasting itself. The acidity is zero to null, while the bitterness is quite high.
- Acidity – Low
- Bitterness – High
Find The Best Brewing Method
If you’re going to get used to black coffee, you’ll need to optimize your flavors and textures. And that’s where the brewing method comes into play.
Here are some of the popular ones.
- Coffee Maker/Drip
As the name suggests, you just need a coffee maker, and it’ll work it’s magic. You just have to press the buttons.
Drip coffee is light, smooth and runny. The mouthfeel is silky and delicious.
- Pour Over
Just like the coffee maker method, this method also involves a conical filter, that filters the oil and grainy coffee particles away, while the flavor and aroma ends up in the cup.
The texture is smooth, almost like tea.
- Cold Brew
Cold brew is the simplest of them all. But it’s time taking. If you’re willing to put in the time, then cold brew might be for you.
Cold brew involves immersing the coffee in room temperature, and leaving it in the fridge for 8 – 12 hours. Then filter the coffee, and drink it. Simple.
Cold brew coffee is crispy and fresh. The mouthfeel is smooth, silky and light.
- French Press
The pour over and drip methods make smoother black coffees. But if you’re into denser, thicker textures, try the French press.
The method is simple; the coffee beans are immersed in hot water, and a metal filter is used to fill your cup with sludgy thick coffee, while filtering the coarse particles away.
Expresso doesn’t involve immersion. Instead, hot water is forced through the coffee grind, by the help of an espresso machine.
As a result, a thick and exotic cup of coffee is made.
Keep the Coffee Fresh
As I’ve mentioned before; black coffee is hard to get used to. So you might as well use everything you have at your disposal.
When coffee isn’t fresh, the taste gets disrupted and becomes somewhat bitter.
Here’s how you can keep the coffee fresh for your perfect black coffee.
- Store your coffee beans in an air-tight container, to keep it away from the air and moisture.
- Store your coffee beans in a storage canister, to keep it away from heat.
- Store your coffee beans in an opaque container, to keep it away from light.
- Buy the right amount of coffee.
- You could even roast and grind the beans yourself before brewing, if time and effort isn’t a problem.
Here are some final tips to make your delicious black coffee work for you.
- Match the grind size, grind roast, type of coffee, brewing method and extraction time with each other, before making the final coffee.
- Consider the acidity and bitterness factors of the grind size, grind roast, type of coffee, extraction time, and brewing method.
- Consider the flavor and aroma of your coffee.
Coffee enthusiasts! I hope you can achieve your dreams and finally open up your taste to black coffee. It’s the purest form of coffee and is perfect. Sure it requires a bit of getting used to, but nothing we coffee lovers can’t handle. So if you really want to become an avid black coffee drinker, I’d say, go for it.