In September's blog about our origin, we briefly discussed the definition of a coffee bloom. Since it's the star of our brand, let's look deeper into this little moment of magic that has captured the attention of coffee enthusiasts everywhere.
Essentially, a coffee bloom is the rapid release of CO 2 when water is poured over fresh coffee grounds. The great thing about blooming is that you can immediately tell how fresh your beans are. For example, if you try to bloom stale coffee, you're going to be disappointed.
Now for the science...when coffee is roasted, it traps CO 2 inside the beans. Slowly, the beans will emit this gas over time, known as 'degassing.' After you grind the beans, the gas releases more rapidly usually dissipating within about 24 hours, give or take. In contrast, whole bean coffee will take days, maybe even a week for the carbon dioxide to be expelled. When water meets the grounds, the rest of the CO2 escapes even faster...so fast, you can see it. The more gas that is released, the bigger the bloom, the fresher the coffee. Makes sense, right?
This matters to you because the bigger the bloom, the fresher the coffee, the more flavorful your cup of joe will be. It's not only the age of the beans that affects the bloom, but also how it is stored. You'll notice that when you purchase a bag of Full Bloom coffee, there is a release valve that allows CO 2 to escape while keeping oxygen out (so your bag doesn't explode of course).
What about coffee-making methods? Of course there's a huge variety of techniques, since you know by now that coffee is a hugely diverse and complex hobby (read, "obsession") that is always expanding. If you're using a pour over, pour the water in a circular motion over the grounds. When using an automatic coffee machine, pour just enough water to get the grounds wet, let them rest for a couple of minutes, then use the machine as normal.
Here's a summary for you tl;dr people out there:
More gas = bigger bloom
Bigger bloom = fresher coffee
Fresher coffee = more flavor
Now you can remind your coffee snob friends that it's all just a bunch of gas.