If you want stronger cup of coffee, you are not alone. To make a good and strong cup of coffee, you will need a better understanding of the types of coffee beans, the caffeine content in each type of coffee beans, the ways to grind coffee, and the brew method.
What is “strong” coffee?
The definition of strong coffee may not be the same among coffee drinkers. Some want it to be bitter. Others look for darker coffee. For many, strong coffee simply means more caffeine to help them stay awake. Strong coffee also may mean the coffee is “thicker”.
How to make strong coffee
- Type of coffee beans – Robusta vs. Arabica
There are more than 100 different types of coffee beans that currently exist. However, Robusta and Arabica are the two main types of beans produced and commercialized. Robusta coffee has more caffeine compared to Arabica. The caffeine in Robusta is 2.5% while Arabica is 1.3%. If you drink coffee made of Robusta or a blend with Robusta coffee, you will have more caffeine intake in your body compared to the same weight of coffee made of pure 100% Arabica coffee. However, Robusta coffee also has more bitter taste than Arabica coffee. In term of flavor Arabica coffee offers richer aroma profile than Robusta.
- Roast profile – light vs. dark
Dark roast coffee offers a more bitter taste than light roast coffee. This attribute comes from the caramelization process when the sugar in coffee beans melts at a high temperature. During the coffee roasting process, the temperature usually is as high as 340F to 390F. Yet it does not mean that the darker the beans are roasted, the more flavorful the coffee is. With too high heat, however, when the temperature reaches over 500F, the beans will easily combust resulting in the coffee losing all its varietal characteristics.
- Water-to-coffee ratio
The coffee weight in a cup also plays an important role. To make strong coffee, you need to increase the amount of ground coffee when brewing without adding more water. This will make your coffee “thicker” and denser. In general, and for best brewing method, the ratio 1:18 (1 part of coffee and 18 parts of water) is recommended. To go for stronger coffee, you can adjust the ratio to 1:15 or even more depending on your preference.
There are several factors to contribute to a stronger cup of coffee. Choosing the right type of beans (Robusta), processing the right roasting method (dark roast), or adjusting the water-to-coffee ratio will help you make your ideal cup of coffee at the strength level you prefer.