•Always make sure you know that you are buying Arabica beans. These beans are more expensive to cultivate but yield a superior flavour. Arabica beans only grow at high altitudes and generally between the coffee belt, which is the region between the Tropic of Cancer and the Tropic of Capricorn.
•When you buy wholebean or even a latte at a coffee shop, ask them where their beans are from and how they are roasted. If you are buying wholebean coffee, this information should always be on the bag.
•Many coffee houses use the words “premium beans” or “freshly roasted” and even “organic”. Beware that these can be mere marketing ploys and mean very little. The organic statement should always be certified and it should be stated what “premium” actually means.
•Avoid buying preground or “pods” of coffee for espresso machines. This compromises flavour and is never as fresh as “wholebean”
•When buying a coffee in a coffee shop – you should ask if the farmers are benefiting financially from the cup of coffee that has just been prepared. The answer should always be a resounding “yes”. One should always feel a little concerned if the barista does not know the answer or not know where the coffee is from.
via Sandy Barlow