Coffee bean storage: it’s a crucial step in coffee success!
You walk through the door with a bag of top-quality, ethical coffee. Most likely with a big grin on your face because, hello, you’re clutching AWESOME coffee.
But then you glance around your kitchen and wonder where to go next. Do you put the beans in the fridge? The cupboard? The sock drawer upstairs? Wonder no longer, because we’ve put together five nifty tips to solve all your coffee storage questions. Get reading!
To fridge or not to fridge, that is the question
Should I store coffee beans in the fridge? This is a frequent question amongst caffeine lovers keen to keep their coffee in good shape. We often turn to our trusty fridges when we want to keep things fresh. We’ve all been guilty of shoving a banana or loaf of bread in the fridge just because, well, it’s the fridge, so it’s got to do some good. Right?
Wrong. Just like your daily slice or yellow banana, coffee should not be kept in the fridge. Coffee disrupts our fridge = freshness equation by deteriorating faster in the fridge than at room temperature. It’s all that opening and closing that’s the real killer. Moisture forms on the coffee each time you open the fridge door, which speeds up the ageing process and makes it turn stale. Not the way to show your coffee you care.
Also, you don’t want your coffee having a party with onions, garlic and stinky cheese, do you? Coffee is porous, meaning that it will take on any strong aromas floating around your fridge. No coffee label ever said ‘light roast with a hint of cheddar’, did it…
So grab your coffee from the chilly depths and store it somewhere cool-ish instead. A pantry or larder is ideal. Steer clear of places exposed to heat, such as windowsills or the cupboard next to the oven, as these can also speed up coffee ageing.
Flash freeze: should I put coffee in the freezer?
The jury’s still out on whether we should store coffee in the freezer, but it’s not a move we recommend. Once again, opening and closing the freezer door is the problem here. Each time you bring your coffee in and out (and shake it all about), a little age-inducing moisture will start to form.
If you find yourself in a situation where you have too much coffee, it would be best to put your unopened bag in the freezer (and keep it there) rather than leave it lingering on the side for months. Just make sure you allow it to thaw fully before brewing.
A tin for the win!
We now know where you should – and shouldn’t – store coffee, but what should you store it in?
Oxygen is coffee’s No. 1 enemy, so an airtight container is always the way to go. Opt for one made from opaque glass, ceramic or a non-reactive metal so it doesn’t impart any container-y flavour onto your fresh coffee. Our Two Chimps enamel tins are a failsafe choice, and they’re just the right size for a 250g bag!
We deliver all our coffees in recyclable, sealable pouches, which are equally good at keeping coffee fresh. They have a clever little valve in the back that allows coffee gases to escape while keeping oxygen out. Just the ticket!
In ‘light’ of everything… is sunlight bad for coffee?
Light is life. It brings flowers into bloom and makes us feel fantastic. Coffee, however, is a little shyer and prefers a dark, cool spot out of direct sunlight. It’s not too keen on the Ultraviolet light in the sun’s rays, which makes things decay as well as grow. The UV rays cause the molecules in your coffee to change structure and break down, which has a knock-on effect on flavour. This is called photodegradation – a new word to add to your coffee glossary.
With this in mind, we never recommend clear storage containers. Yes, we know you want to sit there gazing at your lovely coffee, but transparent tubs leave beans and grounds exposed to harmful rays. So, store out of direct sunlight instead. Yes, in your sock drawer if you must.
Don’t stockpile – it’s coffee, not loo roll!
You might find it comforting to know you have a 1kg bag sitting in the cupboard, but storing large amounts of coffee is never the way to a standout brew. You can tick every other box, but if your coffee has been sitting there for months, it will never taste top-notch.
Freshness is at the heart and soul of a good coffee. Beans are best enjoyed within 12 weeks of the roast, but sooner is always better. That’s why we chimps roast multiple times each week and champion the ‘little and often’ approach. By subscribing to small, regular deliveries, you know you are always drinking coffee that’s fresh from the roaster. This is coffee that’s really good. So good, in fact, you might find that the only place you can possibly store it is in your mug…
Need some coffee after all this coffee storage success? Head to our online shop to find beautiful brews of every sort…