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Types of Coffee Roasts & Coffee Flavor Profiles

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Types of Coffee Roasts & Coffee Flavor Profiles
Marlena S. Jan 29, 2020

Determine Your Preferred Coffee Roast Level

Light Roast Coffee Logo

Light Roast Coffee

Light roast coffee beans are light brown in color and are a preferred roast for more mild-bodied coffees. Light roast coffee should not have any oil on the surface of the coffee beans. If you prefer light, fragrant, floral or fruity coffee notes - you'll enjoy a light roast coffee.

AKA: Light City, Half City, Cinnamon, New England

Medium Roast Coffee Logo

Medium Roast Coffee

Medium roast coffee is medium brown in color with a non-oily surface. Traditionally, a medium roast is the most preferred type of coffee roast in America. If you prefer a flavorful, traditional cup of coffee you'll enjoy a medium roast.

AKA: City, American, Breakfast

Medium Dark Roast Coffee Logo

Medium-Dark Roast Coffee

Medium-dark roast coffee beans are a rich, dark brown color with a semi-oily surface. This type of roast produces a modest bittersweet aftertaste. If you prefer slight bittersweet notes and deep flavors, you'll enjoy a medium-dark roast.

AKA: Full City

Dark Roast Coffee Logo

Dark Roast Coffee

Dark roast coffee beans are nearly black, oily and produce a noticeable bitterness. The darker the coffee bean, the less acidity will be present in the coffee. If you prefer a heavy mouthfeel and strong flavor, you'll enjoy a dark roast coffee.

AKA: High, Continental, New Orleans, European, Espresso, Viennese, Italian, French

Determine Your Preferred Coffee Flavor Profile


Coffee with a mild body is not sharp, pungent or strong. Many light roast coffees normally possess a mild flavor profile.


Coffee with a bold body has a strong and noticeable flavor. Coffees from medium to dark roast levels normally possess a bold flavor profile.

Extra Bold

Coffee with an extra bold body has flavors that are extremely strong and pronounced. Dark roast coffees normally possess an extra bold flavor profile.


  • CC
    Cindy Castelazo

    Hi, I just came across your website and I’m excited to try something out! I have heard that shade grown coffee is less acidic. I would like something organic and shade grown but that still retains some acidity as I have tried some low acid coffees that ended up tasting flat to me. Any recommendations? Thanks!

    FRC Logo Icon
    Team FRC

    There’s no actual certification for shade grown coffee and, in fact, many farms are a combination of shade and sun. However, if you’re looking for organic, low-acid coffees, check out the volcanic-soil-grown varieties from the Indo-Pacific region. Our selections from Bali, Sumatra, Flores, Java, and Timor all fit the bill!

  • MM
    Mark McKinney

    I am interested in trying my hand at roasting coffee for my family. We really enjoy Black Knight. Which beans would you recommend for us to try?

    FRC Logo Icon
    Team FRC

    Hi, Mark! We’re thrilled to hear you like Black Knight! Our recipes are proprietary, but we can tell you that it’s a blend of Central American and Indo-Pacific coffees. We’d recommend trying your hand at coffees from either of those regions or make your own blend! Go for a darker roast for a bolder brew. Let us know how your home roasting journey goes!

  • SO
    sarah okoon

    I recently enjoyed the dark Sumatra. How can I order it again?

    FRC Logo Icon
    Team FRC

    Dark Sumatra is always available on our website in coffee pods, whole bean or ground coffee - even in convenient fractional packs! Simply type Dark Sumatra in the search bar at the top of your page and see what Fresh Roasted Coffee has to offer! If you’ve ordered before and have an account set up, simply log in to your account! You can see your past orders and easily place re-orders from your history.

  • T

    Can you use your dark roasts such as Black Knight in a super automatic machine or is it too oily?

    FRC Logo Icon
    Team FRC

    Great question! And the answer is, it depends! Darker roasted coffees express more oil than light or medium roast coffees but it also depends on the age of your beans. The longer they sit, the more oil they express. It also depends on your machine. Some process Black Knight or Italian without a problem - and some don’t. Your best bet is to use FRESH beans and store them in a cool, dark, airtight location. This will keep them fresh for as long as possible. For particularly finicky automatics, one method we’ve used successfully in the past is quickly rubbing your beans in a kitchen towel to reduce the surface oil. Thanks for your question!

  • WW
    Wesley Wilson

    Do you have a blend that include light, medium, and dark roasted beans?

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    Team FRC

    We don’t have a blend that has all three but we do have a bundle - several of them, in fact! Check out our variety packs HERE

  • C

    I enjoyed your Sumatra dark and Costa Rican Dark coffee pods. Do yo have suggestions for euro style pods with low acidity?

    FRC Logo Icon
    Team FRC

    As a rule of thumb, darker roasts have lower acidity than medium or light roasts and coffees from the Indo-Pacific region have the lowest acid by growing region (African coffees are the highest with Central and South America somewhere in between). You might want to try our organic Dark Mexican and Bali Blue Moon as both are very smooth and sweet.

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