What is the Difference Between Light, Medium and Dark Roast Coffee?

As coffee drinkers, we all have preferences, and many people prefer one coffee roast over another. 

Coffee Roasting

As coffee drinkers, we all have preferences, and many people prefer one coffee roast over another. To craft the perfect morning cup, our master roaster carefully creates each of our roasts in his mini roaster, perfecting each one by balancing & testing the complex flavor profile. Extensive preparation goes into each roast to make light, medium, and dark roast coffee. So, what are the differences between light, medium and dark roast coffee?

Light, Medium + Dark Roast Coffee

Behind the scenes of our coffee roasting process.

Behind the scenes from our coffee roasting process.

Light Roast Coffee

Let's start with light roasted coffee. Our organic coffee company explains that coffees that have been lightly roasted are light brown and have a more matte, dry feel. These coffees frequently have a gentle body, crisp acidity, and vibrant tastes and are sweeter than other darker roasts. The scent of freshly ground light roast coffee is often described as citrus-like.

Internal temperatures of lightly roasted coffee frequently range from 350 to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. As a result, these whole bean coffee beans almost reach the "first crack," or the point at which the internal vapors of the beans penetrate the outer wall and make a "cracking" sound.

Fun fact, light roasted coffee often has more caffeine than dark roasted coffee, although it is commonly believed to be the other way around.

Medium Roast Coffee

Medium roast coffees have a deep dark brown color. Unlike other roasts, they rarely have an oily surface. These coffees have medium acidity and body and a rounded flavor profile.

Typically, they are more balanced since they still convey complex, brighter notes while having substance. Freshly ground medium roast coffee may have hints of chocolate, almonds, red fruits, or baking spices in its scent. 

Dark Roast Coffee

Dark roast coffee has a surface that is frequently oily and is a dark brown color. These coffees tend to reveal richer, darker flavors and have low acidity and hefty bodies. Although coffees roasted to this level can lose some of their origin characteristics, that doesn't mean they are tasteless. In fact, some coffee beans thrive with chocolatey, nutty, and caramel flavors, truly lending themselves to a dark roast.

French Roast Coffee

Although French roast sounds light, it is one of the darkest roasted coffees available. The "French" in its name alludes to the French roasting technique rather than the origin of the coffee beans themselves. French roasts are sometimes referred to as double roasted coffee since the roasting method requires it to crack twice to get that well-known, strong, and smoky flavor.

Try One Of Our Coffees Today

Our delicious coffees feature a variety of roasts and flavor profile. Find us in your Costco Coffee section or your local Raley's. You can also order our coffee directly online.