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Discussions > Espresso > Q and A > Questions about...  
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DeanOK
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DeanOK
Joined: 24 Sep 2012
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Posted Sat Jul 27, 2013, 11:04am
Subject: Questions about freezing fresh roasted coffee
 

I have been ordering coffee one pound at a time to ensure that I always have fresh coffee. I live by myself and it is easy for me to order in time to keep fresh coffee arriving on time, but every now and then I end up with a few other people at the house that want me to create them an espresso drink..... so all of a sudden, I am out of coffee or very low on coffee. If I can freeze my coffee, I can order more at one time and eliminate some of these problems associated with keeping a small amount of coffee on hand. BTW, I am not ready to start roasting. I think I will leave the roasting to others.

Here is my questions:

How much does it affect taste?

How old should the beans be when you freeze them?

Sealed container or vacuum sealed bag (I have one of those vacuum sealers)?

Does frozen coffee grind differently?

Any certain thawing technique?
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calblacksmith
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calblacksmith
Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 7,499
Location: Riverside, Ca, U.S.A.
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Roaster: gave it a try, decided no
Posted Sat Jul 27, 2013, 11:44am
Subject: Re: Questions about freezing fresh roasted coffee
 

Mod note.
Moved to Q&A.


Freezing coffee is a personal decision. I have no problem with it. Do a search with the search feature for freezing and you will find many hours of reading.

 
In real life, my name is
Wayne P.
Anything I post is personal opinion and is only worth as much as anyone else's personal opinion. YMMV!

Feed the newbs, starve the trolls and above all enjoy what you drink!
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D4F
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Posted Sat Jul 27, 2013, 11:46am
Subject: Re: Questions about freezing fresh roasted coffee
 

You may have searched already, but much back and forth.  From what I found here at CG and looking at HB, some freeze and think it is great and others do not.  I ordered a few singles of Redbird and then switched to 5 lb lots.  I freeze when I get it at 2 - 3 days post roast while it is gassing off.  I use full jars shaken down and refilled to the lid and then  seal.  I do not vacuum as the beans have removed most of the air and they are gassing off anyway.  There is a great aroma when I open a jar and the CO2 escapes.  I use 5 lbs in 8 - 10 weeks and can tell little difference.  Perhaps I do not have refined enough taste, if so then maybe that is good luck.  I freeze in a chest freezer that stays cold, not refrig with cycles of defrost.  I thaw the beans overnight, still sealed so that the cold beans do not have a chance to draw condensation.

I may have to tighten the grind a few micro toward the end of a cycle or 10 weeks, or perhaps a bit here and there.

Some freeze in baggies per search.  If I filled a baggy it would break the seal unless one way valved for the gas off.  Not all valves work well frozen.

Hope that helps, somewhat a summary of what I read and do.

 
D4F also at
http://www.gaggiausersgroup.com/
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qualin
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qualin
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Posted Sat Jul 27, 2013, 10:51pm
Subject: Re: Questions about freezing fresh roasted coffee
 

Before I respond, other people on this board may wish to respond to my post and correct me...

DeanOK Said:

How much does it affect taste?

Posted July 27, 2013 link

I find not much. Depending on how long the beans have been sitting in the freezer, it can "dull" the taste of the beans a little. Especially if the beans have been sitting in the freezer for a month or longer.
Maybe this is a psychosomatic thing for me.. Imagine turning down the colour saturation knob on your TV set a little... that's kind of what its like.  I find beans which have been sitting in the freezer for
two months typically require a finer grind as well, but nothing the grinder can't handle.

DeanOK Said:

How old should the beans be when you freeze them?

Posted July 27, 2013 link

From what I've read on the boards, you should let beans sit for one week before you freeze them so they have a chance to gas off a bit. Once they are frozen, they stop gassing off. (Well, they gas
off just a little, but then it stops once the container has been filled with carbon dioxide.)

DeanOK Said:

Sealed container or vacuum sealed bag (I have one of those vacuum sealers)?

Posted July 27, 2013 link

Either one will work.. The idea is just to keep the beans airtight. They'll still gas off a little bit, but what you want to prevent is oxygen getting to the beans and spoiling them.

DeanOK Said:

Does frozen coffee grind differently?

Posted July 27, 2013 link

Well, in my own personal experience you should let the beans thaw out for at least 8 hours before you consider grinding them. If you don't, the grinder has to work harder. Wether or not it wears the burrs out
faster, I don't know... I've just been told that it isn't a good idea. I also find that I have to tighten the grind up a little more as well if the beans are frozen, I have no idea why. You certainly don't want moisture
gumming things up either.

DeanOK Said:

Any certain thawing technique?

Posted July 27, 2013 link

I just dump the frozen beans into the grinder hopper and don't use them for 8 hours. That's usually good enough.

 
Garbage In, Garbage Out, for every step of the process. From Beans to grinder, grounds to machine, coffee to cup.
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canon
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Posted Sun Jul 28, 2013, 4:00am
Subject: Re: Questions about freezing fresh roasted coffeed
 

My experience is that it's a moving target.
-the longer it's frozen, the more effect freezing has on it.  Less than 3 months marginal depending on how it was frozen
-I did not have good luck when a Frost Free freezer was used, typically found in most refrigerators.  Frost Free works because of the cycling of temperature which has a negative effect on beans.  I use a non Frost Free chest type freezer that stabilized the temp at 0F.
-I have never used canning jars but I suspect if all the air was sucked out of them they would be perfect
-I use vacuum sealed bags.  If packed less than 3 days post roast there is a chance that the gas will expand the bag and lose the seal.   If I suspect this might happen I double bag.

I try to avoid freezing!
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SStones
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Posted Sun Jul 28, 2013, 4:40am
Subject: Re: Questions about freezing fresh roasted coffee
 

qualin Said:

I just dump the frozen beans into the grinder hopper and don't use them for 8 hours. That's usually good enough.

Posted July 27, 2013 link

I suggest letting the beans thaw and come all the way up to room temp before you break the seal. If exposed while still frozen they will condense moisture from the air and become slightly damp on the surface. The moisture will evaporate but it does affect the flavour of the beans, perhaps they've been made more porous by the surface moisture and oxidize more quickly. I don't know, that's something for a lab to explain.
I just suggest thawing them while they're still sealed.
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DeanOK
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DeanOK
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Posted Sun Jul 28, 2013, 5:54am
Subject: Re: Questions about freezing fresh roasted coffee
 

SStones Said:

I suggest letting the beans thaw and come all the way up to room temp before you break the seal. If exposed while still frozen they will condense moisture from the air and become slightly damp on the surface. The moisture will evaporate but it does affect the flavour of the beans, perhaps they've been made more porous by the surface moisture and oxidize more quickly. I don't know, that's something for a lab to explain.
I just suggest thawing them while they're still sealed.

Posted July 28, 2013 link

Probably a good idea. Here in OK, humidity is often very high in the summer and it is infrequent that the humidity in my house is below 50% in the summer.  At 50% humidity and 74F indoor temperature the dew point is 54F. I would definitely have condensation form on the surface of the beans.
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CMIN
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Posted Sun Jul 28, 2013, 7:06pm
Subject: Re: Questions about freezing fresh roasted coffee
 

I freeze no problem in my normal fridge freezer, but I have a nice unit so that could be why. Some others I've read that didn't have good luck had older/outdated fridges that pry don't have the efficiency or quick cycles in the freezer (and pry slight leaks as they may not seal as well etc) that more modern ones do. Case in point a buddy tried my method in his fridge freezer which was older and it didn't work well. I use ball pint size canning jars and break the beans down into zip bags and then into the jars right when their delivered. Then I just stick in the freezer and take one out overnight as needed to defrost in a cabinet and use in the morning (and keep squeezing out air as the zip bag is used up and placed back in the canning jar. I've had no problems, I've gone about 2 months out and had no problem pulling shots on similar grind settings as when delivered, I usually have the grinder a tad finer. Same taste, look, smell etc... If I were to buy more coffee and store longer I would go with a deep freeze chest though.
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CoffeeLoversMag
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CoffeeLoversMag
Joined: 10 Jan 2013
Posts: 218
Location: Seattle
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Wed Jul 31, 2013, 4:21am
Subject: Re: Questions about freezing fresh roasted coffee
 

Fresh coffee is easy to extract than frozen one. It has more flavor, aromas, sweetness, and can produce richer and more voluminous crema when it is fresh.  Signs of stale coffee are when the taste is bitter, woody, and monotonic flavors.

If the bags are vacuum-packed, the beans can still be good for a few months. If it is open, then 1 week is the limit. But donít expect that your coffee taste is the same with the fresh one. You may not pull the best shots of beans that was stored for a couple of weeks, but if your adding steamed milk, then the difference canít be noticeable.

 
Did you know...? Dark roast coffees actually have less caffeine than lighter roasts due to the fact that the process of roasting burns off caffeine.
www.coffeeloversmag.com/theMagazine
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CMIN
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Joined: 14 Jun 2012
Posts: 1,224
Location: South FL
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Crossland CC1
Grinder: Baratza Preciso
Posted Wed Jul 31, 2013, 4:25am
Subject: Re: Questions about freezing fresh roasted coffee
 

CoffeeLoversMag Said:

Fresh coffee is easy to extract than frozen one. It has more flavor, aromas, sweetness, and can produce richer and more voluminous crema when it is fresh.  Signs of stale coffee are when the taste is bitter, woody, and monotonic flavors.

If the bags are vacuum-packed, the beans can still be good for a few months. If it is open, then 1 week is the limit. But donít expect that your coffee taste is the same with the fresh one. You may not pull the best shots of beans that was stored for a couple of weeks, but if your adding steamed milk, then the difference canít be noticeable.

Posted July 31, 2013 link

your post are annoying, and freezing far outweighs leaving in a bag in a cabinet. Been there done that, the beans will not last months fresh. They will still stale, fairly fast. I can pull out beans using my method of a zip bag and ball caning jar two months later and pull basically same tasting shot as when fresh. Try that with a packed bag it was shipped in and left in a cabinet and see how that works out for ya... hint, won't be good. Even nitro packed Lavazza is night and day difference (in a bad way) the day or two after opening (not that their beans were good to begin with anyway).
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