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To freeze or not to freeze . . . ?
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Discussions > Coffee > Q and A > To freeze or not...  
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MochaManiac
Senior Member
MochaManiac
Joined: 16 Sep 2004
Posts: 45
Location: West Michigan
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Kitchen Aid Pro Line
Grinder: Kitchen Aid Pro Line
Posted Thu Jan 10, 2008, 4:08pm
Subject: Re: To freeze or not to freeze . . . ?
 

Thank you, Mizspresso and farmroast!

I really did want to know if keeping the bag in the freezer and bringing it out only when I wanted to use it was better than leaving it on the counter in a canister.  Hey, I'm open to new ways of doing things (even though it may not have seemed like it!).  

Thank you, very much.  

Mizspresso, you said leaving the beans from opened packets in a canister simply allows the beans to continue outgassing.  I understand this, but is there really any other way to do it?  I mean, once the coffee is open, you can't really "seal" it back up to keep it as fresh as day one, can you?  For beans you use for daily espressos, what do you do to store them?

Thanks!
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Mizspresso
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Mizspresso
Joined: 7 Sep 2007
Posts: 304
Location: Sunnyvale, Ca
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Vivaldi II, MyPressi
Grinder: Mahlkonig K30 Vario, Macap...
Drip: Bodum (press)
Roaster: Sonofresco
Posted Thu Jan 10, 2008, 4:47pm
Subject: Re: To freeze or not to freeze . . . ?
 

Theoretically, you could probably re-vacuum and re-freeze the previously opened container and when you pulled it out again it should be in the last state when you froze it. Bear in mind, I use plastic bags made for the vacuuming unit, not jars, so I can suck out all the air and expect a reasonable re-freeze.

I am not that much of an expert, though, so maybe others will chime in. I do know that  the prevailing opinions are that beans develop post-roast and that very fresh beans may not be at their best; not yet ripened and all you know.

I just use a click-clack container. I keep the container in a cupboard. I bought the container for the lid. It fits my Rocky and works as a plunger to push out leftover grounds. The container turned out to be a good size for my small out-of-freezer batches, though, so I use it that way. Replaced my Rocky so don't need the plunger function so much.

I also have a vacuum-able container, but it's too much trouble to vacuum it every time I use some beans. Anyway, I go through it fast enough that I don't think the vacuumed canister would make much difference.

If you go through a pound in 10 days or so, freezing probably will not make much difference either.

I have started buying a variety of beans, however; I can break down my pounds and just pull out partial pounds when I need it. This way I can do a buy of three pounds or so and not have to deal with old coffee.
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JVBorella
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JVBorella
Joined: 29 Oct 2007
Posts: 1,166
Location: northeastern CT.
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Speedster, Strega, Cremina
Grinder: K10 WBC, Bunnzilla
Vac Pot: Hario NCA 3 & 5, Mitzudash
Drip: Hario Wooden Neck/Buono
Roaster: Hottop KN-8828P/B
Posted Thu Jan 10, 2008, 7:05pm
Subject: Re: To freeze or not to freeze . . . ?
 

I also vacuum bag & freeze my excess coffee beans. I wouldn't suggest storing your daily use coffee that way as bringing them in & out of the freezer will produce condensation. Just break down whatever amount you buy into 3-4 day supplies or single use sizes for special stuff & freeze them until needed. Once opened store in a zip lock bag in an airtight container on the shelf until you use it up. I've been doing this for 4 months now & am very happy with the results.

 
John
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The_Mighty_Bean
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The_Mighty_Bean
Joined: 24 Feb 2006
Posts: 465
Location: Bowie, MD
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: "Beauty"  (the gentle and...
Grinder: Gi-normous Rossi RR45; 100...
Vac Pot: Have my eye on a Yama
Drip: French press purist, have a...
Roaster: Hairdryer and a wire whisk....
Posted Thu Jan 10, 2008, 7:32pm
Subject: Re: To freeze or not to freeze . . . ?
 

It's pretty simple... coffee I keep on the counter for 2.5 weeks = near-zero crema, gushing black pours. Coffee I freeze for 2.5 weeks, pulling it out every couple days to transfer a few ounces to daily-use containers-- basically stays as fresh as when I first popped it in the freezer.

As long as you are quick and put the bulk back into cold storage before moisture condenses out onto the beans, you will drastically slow degassing by keeping your stock of whole beans frozen.  It's true that without individual packets that are nitrogen-flushed and  truly vac-sealed (and probably flash frozen) some degassing will occur. But plain old freezing in a sealed container slows the process enough to keep your espresso not only drinkable but truly artisan quality for at least a month (my own experience) and maybe 2-4 times that (citing the freezer experiments linked above).

Mizpresso is right on the money. :)


~tMb

PS But your roaster is not.... freezer or no freezer, preground is lousy within several minutes, and truly useless within 24 hours or so.

--edit-- just wanted to add a note. Beans warm up --fast--. a doubleshot dose (2.5 heaping tablespoons whole beans) popped into a grinder straight out of the freezer are at refrigerator temp within less than a minute and ready to grind in under two minutes. I don't think you have to worry about hurting your grinder on a frozen bean.
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MochaManiac
Senior Member
MochaManiac
Joined: 16 Sep 2004
Posts: 45
Location: West Michigan
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Kitchen Aid Pro Line
Grinder: Kitchen Aid Pro Line
Posted Fri Jan 11, 2008, 5:59am
Subject: Re: To freeze or not to freeze . . . ?
 

Thank you all so much.  You were all so very helpful.  I think the idea of breaking up my pound of coffee into 3 - 4 day packets is a great idea!  On to modifying my coffee storage (for daily use) method . . . :)
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rasqual
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rasqual
Joined: 29 Jun 2005
Posts: 1,076
Location: Chicago area
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: *$ Barista, non-pressurized
Grinder: SMP
Vac Pot: Yama, Aeropress
Drip: Porcelain Melitta 103, Hario
Roaster: "ring roaster", mod popper
Posted Wed Jan 16, 2008, 7:40am
Subject: Re: To freeze or not to freeze . . . ?
 

A year ago, I picked up a thousand 4x7 Minigrip .002 mil Zipper Bags (pdf alert) -- they're still on closeout sale, I see, for two cents each (per 1000).

These hold a maximum of 5.5 ounces of beans (obviously YMMV depending on bean and roast level). This happens to match the batch size for the church's dual Bunn airpot brewer (3 liters -- just set the thing up and am having a lot of fun), which will be nice for the women. Just drop a bag in the grinder and go.

It's a great bag to throw samples at folks, too -- and it's a lot cheaper than valve bags. The zipper leaks enough to act as a valve bag, and it's practically certain that no O2 leaks inward.

Heartily recommended. Darned handy for other stuff around the house, and with the kids, too. It's a good (small) size.

I have no idea how much the other sizes in the list might hold. It'd be interesting to know.
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