When it comes to buying coffee online, there is no such thing as the “best online coffee store”. You are likely to come across an endless selection of websites offering everything that has to do with coffee from the world over. However, some online stores are better than others, and it makes sense to evaluate a store before placing your coffee beans order with them to find out more about who you are ordering from.
It must however be noted that the many benefits that you find buying coffee online also apply to your grocery store near where you live or work. As people in the UK and elsewhere mostly look for an artisan coffee roaster nearby, there is a rapid growth of online coffee sales.
Here are a few useful pointers to guide you through when buying coffee beans at online stores.
Make sure that the online store states in clear terms how they will package your coffee beans. Freshly roasted beans keep releasing some gases for a week or so after being roasted and need a way to get out. Hence, a vacuum-sealed container with a one-way valve is the best solution to release the gas while preventing any incoming air and odour that are likely to be absorbed by the beans and become stale quickly.
Fresh Roasted Beans
The freshness of coffee beans delivered is probably a strong reason to order online. Coffee, both beans or ground, perish quickly and the fresher the coffee is, the better is its taste. A variety of factors contribute to the beans going bad quickly including the roast level, packaging, and if the beans are whole or ground. The general consensus among roasters is that coffee beans reach their “peak flavour” in a week or two of their roasting, though coffee still taste great even after four weeks. It is best to go with the roster with their time frame within which to consume the coffee. When bought online, you will be getting the same level of freshness that you would get when bought from your local roaster.
Availability of Grind Options
For most people, the fun part of drinking coffee is in exploring the different flavours that the world of coffee has in store. The good thing of shopping for coffee online lies in the availability of different roasters and the options to try coffee from various parts of the world, be it single-origin or blend, and also the possibility of experimenting the different roasting levels, types of beans, and even coffee of different seasons.
Once freshly roasted, some roasters offer a wide array of grinds to try while others have a select range. While whole beans remain freshest and give the best flavour when ground just before brewing, many buyers do not have the facility to grind their coffee beans. Look online for a coffee store that sells a French Press, Drip Grind, and an Espresso grind that will help you find the perfect grind for brewing.
One of the best things about buying coffee online is the ease you have to compare prices of similar types of coffee beans with similar packaging. This helps you to avoid paying a much higher price for your ordered coffee beans. However, you need to be careful not to pay a hefty sum in shipping cost that is added to the price of coffee. Some stores reduce or do not charge shipping cost if a certain quantity is ordered. Buying a little more than what you require may not be a bad decision.
Certain online stores offer coffee beans in varying sizes of packaging for sale. Hence, for those who drink a lot of coffee, a good choice would be a 5-pound bag that also saves money. But for those who want to try out a new roast, buying a 1 pound coffee bag would make the cut.
To get the best flavour of brewed coffee, the roasted coffee beans need to be consumed within 3 or 4 weeks of roasting. This makes the estimated shipping time to your place an important factor to consider when ordering. Of course, stores located nearby are a better choice for a faster arrival in the mail.
Taking everything into consideration, the benefits of buying coffee online far outnumber their downsides. The high shipping costs of ordering online can well be addressed by buying larger quantities at a time that reduces both the total cost and the frequency of orders considerably.