The Complete Guide to Buying Coffee

Long ago, in the green hills of Ethiopia, a goat herder named Kaldi looked after his animals. One day, he saw his goats eating red berries from a tree. They became lively, so Kaldi tried the berries himself and felt energized. He told a monk about it, who made a drink from the berries and stayed awake during prayers. People began growing these berries, and coffee became popular worldwide (or so the story goes!). 

Legend has it that coffee came to India through Baba Budan, a Sufi Saint. He found coffee in Mecca and wanted to bring it to India. He hid seven beans in his robes and returned to India, settling in Chikmagalur, Karnataka. He grew the beans with care, and they became the first coffee plants in India. Soon, everyone knew about this amazing drink, and coffee became famous in the region. Because of Baba Budan's love for coffee, India became a top producer of tasty coffee. 

That's how coffee became a part of our culture. But for true coffee lovers, the adventure never ends. Exploring new flavours, choosing the right blend, and picking the perfect brew for each mood is a daily joy. In this blog, we dive into different aspects of coffee that should guide your decision on which type of coffee belongs in your kitchen. 

Reasons to Love Coffee

People really like coffee for a bunch of reasons!  

Coffee is an Energy Booster 

First off, it helps them wake up and feel more energetic in the morning. No matter how busy or tough the day might seem, coffee gives them the boost to get through it. 

Coffee is Just Yum 

Another big reason is that coffee tastes really good! There are so many flavours and types to try, from strong and bold to smooth and creamy, there's a coffee flavour for everyone! 

Coffee Unites Hearts 

Coffee also brings people together. Whether it's hanging out with friends at a café or chatting with coworkers over a cup during a break, it's a great way to connect with others. 

Coffee is 'Comfort Food' 

Plus, coffee is super comforting. Holding a warm mug feels cozy, especially on a cold day. It's like a warm hug that helps people relax and feel at ease. 

Coffee is Versatile 

And you can enjoy coffee in lots of different ways! Hot or cold, with milk and sugar or just plain black, there are endless ways to enjoy it. You can even use it in cooking and baking to make tasty dishes. 

It's no wonder coffee is such a favourite all around the world! And these reasons make it all the more important to choose your brew carefully. 

Understanding the Bean Basics 

Arabica and Robusta are the two most popular types of coffee beans. They have some big differences that affect how coffee tastes. Let's break it down. 

Firstly, Arabica beans offer a smooth and mild flavour, while Robusta beans have a stronger and more bitter taste. It is like the difference between a gentle hug and a bone crunching one! 

Arabica beans also have more complex flavours, like fruity or floral notes. On the other hand, Robusta beans have a more straightforward taste. It is often described as nutty or woody. 

One big reason for these differences is where the beans are grown. Arabica beans usually grow at higher altitudes and cooler temperatures, like Colombia or Ethiopia. Robusta beans, on the other hand, thrive in lower altitudes with warmer climates, like Vietnam or Brazil. 

Another factor is the amount of caffeine in the beans. Robusta beans have about twice as much caffeine as Arabica beans. That is why Robusta coffee can give you a bigger energy boost! 

But it's not just about caffeine. The type of bean also affects the texture of the coffee. Arabica beans produce a smoother and more delicate brew. Then we have Robusta beans that create a thicker and more robust cup. 

When it comes to flavour, Arabica beans are often preferred for their balanced and nuanced taste. They are great for people who enjoy savouring different flavours in their coffee. Robusta beans are popular for their strong and bold flavour. These qualities make them a good choice for those who like a more intense coffee experience. 

In summary, Arabica and Robusta beans have many differences. Both have their own unique qualities, catering to different preferences among coffee lovers! And that is why it is important to know these differences and pick your coffee accordingly.  

Levels of Roasting

When it comes to coffee, roasting plays a big role in how it tastes. Let us explore the different roasting levels and how they affect the flavour. 

Light Roast 

Firstly, there's light roast. Lightly roasted coffee beans have a light brown colour and a mild flavour. They often have more acidity and a bright, fruity taste. It's like a fresh and crisp apple! 

Medium Roast 

Moving on to medium roast. Medium roasted beans are a bit darker in colour, with a balanced flavour that's not too strong or too mild. They have a smooth and well-rounded taste, with hints of chocolate or caramel. It's cozy and comforting! 

Dark Roast 

Then, there's dark roast. Dark roasted beans are much darker in colour, almost black, and they have a strong and bold flavour. They often taste smoky or bitter, with less acidity. It's like a powerful punch! 

Each roasting level brings out different flavours in the coffee beans. Light roast preserves more of the beans' original flavours, while medium roast adds a bit of richness and complexity. Dark roast, on the other hand, gives coffee a bold and intense flavour. 

When coffee beans are roasted, the process does not always change their caffeine levels. It's like this: Lighter roasts have more caffeine because they are roasted for a shorter time. Darker roasts, however, have less caffeine because they are roasted for longer.  

In summary, the roasting level of coffee beans has a big impact on the flavour of the final brew. Light roast offers a mild and fruity taste, medium roast gives a balanced and smooth flavour, and dark roast provides a bold and intense flavour. Each roasting level has its own unique qualities. They cater to different preferences among coffee lovers! When you shop for coffee the next time, do not forget to give this some thought.  

Grind Size and Brewing Concepts

The size of coffee grind and the brewing method used are key factors that affect coffee flavour. Let's delve into how they work together to create different tastes. 

Firstly, let's talk about grind size. Coffee beans can be ground to different sizes, like coarse, medium, fine, and extra fine. Each size impacts the flavour of the final brew in a different way. 

Coarse Grind 

Coarse grind, with its larger particles, extracts flavours slowly during brewing. This gives you a mild and light-bodied coffee. 

Medium Grind 

Medium grind, with slightly smaller particles, produces a well-balanced cup of coffee. It extracts flavours at a moderate pace, giving the coffee medium body and acidity. It's neither too bitter nor too sweet - just right! 

Fine Grind 

Fine grind, with even smaller particles, extracts flavours quickly. This creates a strong and bold coffee with a full body and rich aroma. It's like biting into a piece of dark chocolate—intense and satisfying.  

Extra Fine Grind 

Extra fine grind, with the smallest particles, extracts flavours even more quickly. The resulting brew is an intense, thick, and concentrated coffee. It's like drinking a shot of espresso—strong and invigorating! 

Now, let us consider the brewing methods. There are many ways to brew coffee. They include drip, french press, espresso, pour-over, and cold brew. Each method extracts flavours from the coffee grounds differently, further influencing the taste. 

Drip Coffee 

For example, drip coffee involves pouring hot water over coffee grinds in a filter. Then the water drips through the grinds extracting flavours along the way. This method typically gives a clean and bright cup of coffee. It highlights the beans' natural qualities. 

French Press 

French press involves steeping the grinds in hot water. This takes place for several minutes before pressing them down to separate the grinds from the brewed coffee. This method results in a rich and full-bodied brew, with more oils and sediment retained.  

Espresso Method 

Espresso brewing forces hot water through finely ground coffee at high pressure. This process extracts intense flavours and creates a thick, concentrated shot of coffee. It gives a bold and powerful punch of flavour! 


Pour-over involves pouring hot water over coffee grinds in a filter, allowing it to drip through slowly. This method produces a clean and nuanced cup. It highlights specific flavour notes of the coffee beans.  

Cold Brew 

The Cold brew method involves steeping coarsely ground coffee in cold water. This method takes time, usually overnight. This result is a smooth and mellow brew, with lower acidity and bitterness.  

In conclusion, the size of the coffee grinds and the brewing method shape the flavour of your coffee. Experimenting with different grind sizes and brewing methods allows you to discover the perfect combination to suit your taste preferences. 

Grind Daily for the Best Coffee  

Grinding coffee beans every day is important for making tasty coffee. Here are five simple reasons why: 

Best Flavour 

Firstly, fresh coffee tastes better. Grinding beans just before brewing keeps the flavour and aroma fresh, giving you a delicious cup of coffee. 

Right Size 

Secondly, grinding daily lets you choose the right size for your coffee maker. Different machines need different sizes of grounds, and grinding fresh ensures you get it right every time.  

Consistent Taste 

Thirdly, fresh grinding means your coffee will always taste the same. Pre-ground coffee might change in taste over time, but grinding daily keeps it consistent. 

Explore Flavours 

Plus, grinding fresh lets you try new coffee beans and mixes. Each type of bean has its own flavour, so grinding fresh helps you discover your favourites. 

Enhanced Coffee Experience 

Lastly, the smell of freshly ground coffee is amazing! It adds to the fun of making coffee and makes the whole experience even better. 

To sum up, grinding coffee every day is key for better taste, consistency, and trying new flavours. It also makes the whole coffee-making process more enjoyable. That's why in-store coffee grinding kiosks from Leo Coffee let you pick your blend to ensure you get the flavour you want each time.  

Reading Between the Lines

When you look at coffee packaging, you might come across some terms that might seem confusing. Let's break down some commonly used coffee jargon and what they mean: 

Single Origin 

Firstly, you might see the term "Single-Origin." This means that the coffee beans come from one specific place, like a particular country or region. Single-origin coffees often have unique flavours that reflect the characteristics of that specific area's soil, climate, and altitude. It's like tasting a slice of pizza from Italy—it's authentic and reflects the flavours of its origin. 


Next, there's "Blend." This means that the coffee is made by mixing beans from different places. Blends are often created to achieve a specific flavour profile or to balance out the characteristics of different beans. It's like mixing different colours to create a new shade—you get a unique and well-rounded taste. 

Roast Level 

You might also see "Roast Level" mentioned on coffee packaging. This refers to how long the coffee beans were roasted for and can range from light to medium to dark. Lighter roasts tend to have more acidity and a lighter flavour, while darker roasts have a richer and bolder taste.  

Tasting Notes 

Another term you might encounter is "Tasting Notes." This describes the flavours and aromas that you can expect to find in the coffee. Tasting notes can include anything from fruity and floral to chocolatey and nutty. They give you an idea of what the coffee will taste like before you even take a sip. It's like reading a menu at a restaurant—it helps you choose the flavours you are in the mood for. 

Fair Trade  

Additionally, you might see "Fair Trade" or "Organic" labels on coffee packaging. Fair Trade means that the coffee was produced and traded in a way that ensures fair prices and treatment for farmers and workers.  


Organic means that the coffee was grown without synthetic pesticides or fertilisers.   

These labels tell you that the coffee was produced ethically and sustainably. It's like knowing that the food you're eating is good for you and good for the environment. 

Understanding these terms can help you choose the perfect coffee that matches your taste preferences and values. 

In The Mood for Coffee?

When it comes to coffee, there's a brew for every mood! Let's explore some types of coffee that match different feelings and situations. 

The Wake-up Brew 

When you're feeling sleepy and need a boost of energy, nothing beats a strong cup of espresso. Espresso is a concentrated shot of coffee. It packs a powerful punch, perfect for waking you up and getting you going.  

The Calming Brew 

If you're feeling stressed or anxious, a soothing cup of chamomile latté might be just what you need. It can help calm your nerves and relax your mind. 

The Cup of Comfort 

When you're in need of comfort and warmth on a chilly day, a cozy mug of chocolate flavoured coffee can do the trick. It is creamy, chocolatey, and oh-so comforting. 

The Risk-taker's Brew 

If you're feeling adventurous and want to try something new, why not experiment with a specialty coffee drink? Specialty coffees come in all sorts of flavours and combinations. You could go for caramel macchiatos or pumpkin spice lattés! They can add a fun and exciting twist to your coffee routine. 

The Refresher Cup 

When you're in the mood for something refreshing and invigorating, an iced coffee or cold brew can hit the spot. These chilled coffee drinks are perfect for hot summer days or when you need a cool pick-me-up.  

The No-Fuss Brew 

And let's not forget about the classic cup of black coffee. Simple, straightforward, and full of flavour, black coffee is perfect for when you just want to enjoy the pure taste of coffee without any frills or fuss. 

In summary, there truly is a coffee for every mood! Whether you need a quick pick-me-up, a soothing drink to help you relax, or something fun and exciting to try, there is a brew out there that is perfect for you. You need to make sure you have it all stocked up at home as well! So next time you are feeling a certain way, you can reach for a cup of coffee that matches your mood—it will make your day a lot better.