Although most java drinkers choose to wake up to a cup made with ground coffee, a growing number are turning to fancier alternatives, like gourmet or premium coffee.
Some are even grinding their own beans. Consumer Reports tested 21 Colombian coffees in a search for the tastiest.
If you want the freshest-tasting coffee, give whole beans a try. Consumer Reports coffee experts focused on Colombian coffee—ground and whole bean—ranging from $5 to $25 a pound.
The experts tasted blind and top rated La Golondrina Colombia Certified Organic from Counter Culture. It’s a complex coffee with fruit and citrus notes, and traces of berry, floral and chocolate. At 59 cents for a six ounce cup it might seem steep for a home brew, but it sure beats coffeehouse prices.
Whole beans from Allegro Colombia Agustino Forest from Whole Foods have notes of citrus, honey, milk chocolate and hints of malt and toast. At 23 cents a cup, it’s a Consumer Reports Best Buy and rated very good.
Another Best Buy: Kirkland Signature Colombian Supremo whole bean, from Costco, for 13 cents a cup. The medium-dark roast has chocolate notes and a hint of dried fruit.
And Consumer Reports tested pre-ground coffees that were very good, including Gevalia’s Colombia has “fruity top notes” for just 16 cents a cup.
To keep your coffee fresh, do not keep it in the refrigerator or freezer, where it can pick up moisture and flavors from other foods. And heat and light oxidize the beans’ oils. So just put it in an airtight container in a kitchen cabinet.
If you want the best-tasting coffee Consumer Reports advises you to avoid grinding your beans at the market, because your coffee can pick up the flavors of other beans.