Most coffee drinkers do not realize that the coffee that they buy at the store is almost always blended coffee. The fact is that most coffee roasting companies blend their coffee from many different coffee beans. Most often, this causes the quality and flavor of the end product to suffer.
There are several reasons why many coffee companies blend. In most cases, it is directly related to how big the company is. Simply put, it is more economical and profitable fora large scale roaster to blend large batches of coffee and sell it in small lots.
Large Scale Coffee Roasters
These companies are not focused on serving high quality coffee to discerning coffee customers. Think of Starbucks. These large scale roasters need a reasonably consistent coffee product in massive volumes constantly. To keep the coffee reasonably consistent, they buy a regular stream of many coffees and blend them. By blending many coffees throughout the seasons, they are able to attain a fairly consistent flavor and consistency to their coffee.
The downside of course is a complete lack of transparency and flavor character.
Small Scall Roasters
There also are small companies that use blends, such as Heart Coffee and Square Mile. These smaller companies create their own blends that vary a good deal and are seasonal in nature. Some of these small scale roasters will have a regular seasonal blend, and others will have a coffee blend that is more consistent throughout the year.
And then there are some companies that do not like to blend at all, and focus their business on single estate coffee. Coffees that are sourced from a single estate or at least a single origin are nearly always better than any blend. Here is why:
- It tastes a lot better. The beans all come from the same place, and there will be just one flavor that will shine through.
- Single estate coffee is usually not as dark roasted to mask poor flavor that is typical of blends.
- They are more organic and cleaner. Single estate coffees usually are free of pesticides and come from all natural growers. Coffees are the most chemically treated crops on the planet, and you are far better off with clean and natural single estate coffee.