Coffee Roasts: Types and Explanation

BENOI NAIR|September 19, 2022

There are two types of people around us – there are ‘tea’ people and then there are ‘coffee’ people. Which one are you?


Apart from the unique flavour, coffee is loved for its ability to wake you up and help you stay focused. Many people swear by their cup of coffee to kick-start their day and to stay energized throughout. There are enormous benefits of coffee for you to start brewing, but we in this blog will only discuss the types of coffee roasts.

The seed inside the coffee cherry is the ‘bean’, which has no coffee-like aroma in its natural state. The roasting process converts this raw bean into what you have been drinking every morning. Therefore, no roast… no coffee!

The varieties of coffee available in the hypermarket aisles can easily overwhelm you, especially if you don’t know what you want. Some popular varieties include French, City, Cinnamon and many more with several types of roasts as well.


Yes, the bean itself holds the key to a flavorful coffee but much depends on the length of the roasting process also since it adds to the aroma and acidity level.



Common types of Coffee Roasts based on Flavor, Aroma and Appearance: –

  • Light
  • Medium
  • Medium-dark
  • Dark


 Light Roast 








As you can get a clear idea from the name itself, light roasts are the beans roasted for a minimum time at a temperature between 356°F/180°C – 401°F/205°C. Since these beans are not roasted for a long time at high temperatures, they do not contain oils. If the beans are roasted for a long time then it may lead to a reduction in caffeine and acidity as well, which is why lightly roasted coffee beans have comparatively more caffeine. Lightly roasted beans have a lemon/ citrus tone in them which appeals to many people.


Medium Roast 








Medium ones are roasted until the first crack only and are a bit darker than lightly roasted beans. Medium roasted beans normally make up American-style coffee, at least most of it. The internal temperature of medium roast range between 410°F/210°C-428°F/220°C.


Medium-Dark Coffee Roasts







Roasted until the beans reach an internal temperature between 437°F/225°C – 446°F/230°C, which is just till the second crack occurs. This type of roast will also show little oil on the surface of the beans due to the comparatively higher temperature. These roasts are less acidic with a fuller flavor.

Dark Coffee Roasts








Since the roasting temperature for these beans is between 464°F/240°C – 482°F/250°C, there will be oil on them. Such is the effect of roasting that one cannot judge the origin of the beans. Since the sugar in the beans has been caramelized due to the prolonged heat, the flavor is sweeter than others and much richer.

Since dark coffee beans are roasted for the longest time, the caffeine and acidity levels are the least, plus the smoky flavor which adds to its characteristics. ‘French’ coffee is a good example of dark roasted beans.


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Website last updated on 27-02-2024 01:56:27 AM

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