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Best Smooth Dark Roast Coffee : Review And Buying Guide

Brandon Forder
  Apr 21, 2024 8:49 AM

Clearly, there is a wide range in the flavor profiles of coffee. A few are dark and brooding, while others are bitter or sharp, while still others are bright, fruity, or even slightly sweet. Many coffees advertise their chocolate, nut, green tea, or spice undertones on the packaging. A connoisseur of coffee will be able to tease out a wide range of flavors from different roasts, with no two variations tasting exactly the same.


In this case, there are a couple of explanations. Where the beans came from, what kind of bean they are, how fine of a grind they are, and how they were processed all have an impact on the final product. However, the lightness or darkness of the roast is typically the most influential variable in flavoring any specific bean. Depending on your preferences, this will be the most important aspect in determining whether or not to purchase a certain coffee.

Today, we'll taste some of the finest dark roasts available—coffee beans with a thick, velvety body and a bitter bite.

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Buying Guide

Types of coffee beans

Commercial coffee production centers around two primary varieties: arabica and robusta. Dark roast coffee can be made using each of these methods, or a combination of them.

In the coffee world, arabica beans are generally considered superior. Of course, robusta works just as well. Arabica beans yield a lighter, more acidic, and fruity and flowery smelling dark roast coffee. However, robusta yields a dark roast coffee that is bitter and earthy, with a rich, woodsy flavor. Since Arabica coffee accounts for 70% of global coffee production, it is the type most usually used to make dark roast coffee.

Types of Dark Roasts

If you're not a regular coffee drinker, going out to buy a dark roast can seem like a huge commitment. That's because dark roast styles like French Roast, Italian Roast, Continental Roast, and Spanish Roast gradually fade away as time passes. Dark roasts, however, are the standard for many flavored coffees.

French Roast

On the roasting scale, French Roast is near the bottom, representing an extremely black roast. It's double-roasted for a deep, smokey sweetness and a dark chocolate-like hue.

Italian Roast

This is a second-crack dark roast, which means it's been roasted for longer. Despite its burnt taste, it contains significantly less caffeine than regular coffee. Compare it to French Roast, and you'll notice that it's darker and oilier.

Continental Roast

The French and Belgians are responsible for the creation of this kind of roast. The darkest possible roast, even darker than Espresso.

Spanish Roast

A Spanish roast is quite close to a second-crack black bean. The oil in the bean produces a glossy appearance after brewing. Caffeine in coffee beans is removed during the roasting process used to make Spanish Roast. Because of this, its body is light and its flavor is scorched.


Purchase whole bean coffee if you want to enjoy it over the course of several weeks after opening a package. Vacuum-sealed ground coffee stays fresh for up to 48 hours after opening, but you should consume it within that time frame.

There's also the fact that coffee tastes vary depending on how soon after roasting you drink it. It's possible that the brew's consistency is amiss, too. Coffee requires ventilation time to release carbon dioxide and other unwanted compounds. Because of this, coffee bags typically feature a valve. You may get your hands on a variety of various sources for dark roast coffee. Very fresh, then, is preferable to old and stale. However, not all approaches are created equal when trying to ascertain whether something is new or not.


Dark roast bean quality assessment is fraught with difficulties. More oils will be released from the beans throughout the roasting process compared to a lighter roast. How much oil, though, is too much? Which part is lacking?

Even with the greatest dark roast coffee beans, the oily appearance is not a reliable indicator of freshness or quality.

When coffee beans are roasted, they "crack" during the process. At roughly 385 degrees Fahrenheit, the first crack appears. To lightly roast something, this would be the right temperature. Contrarily, a dark roast can reach temperatures of 480 degrees Fahrenheit. When temperatures reach roughly 435 degrees Fahrenheit, a second crack forms. It's probably closer to a medium roast if the second crack isn't completely visible. An authentic dark roast can be recognized by its second crack. Feel free to sample the beans in your hand if you get the chance. If they have even a trace of odor, you can rest assured that they are new.

Flavor Profile

Many people have only ever had dark roast because their experience with medium roast was terrible. There are benefits and drawbacks to roasting coffee. It eliminates the unwanted alongside the desired tastes. Therefore, the pleasant floral notes will likely remain after roasting, but any unpleasant flavors will have vanished. However, a unique possibility is presented by dark roast. While it's true that dark roast coffee is typically more bitter, there are varying degrees of bitterness. You can find coffee that tastes like chocolate and has a velvety texture in your mouth. Those are some of the special properties that make dark roast so appealing.


Choose coffee beans made by a reputable company. You may learn a lot about a product and its maker by reading customer reviews and ratings posted online.

Roast date

You should seek out coffee that has recently been roasted. It's been on store shelves for less time but has a deeper flavor.


Is Dark Roast Coffee Stronger?

The perceived intensity of coffee varies from one coffee user to the next. Some people like darker roasts because they feel they are more robust than lighter roasts. As the coffee beans get darker during roasting, the theory goes, the coffee becomes stronger.

There is no discernible difference in caffeine content between light and dark roasted coffee. Some individuals argue that the higher caffeine content of a light roast makes it more potent than a dark roast. In reality, roasting coffee beans doesn't change the amount of caffeine they contain.

How Do You Make Dark Roast Coffee?

Timing is everything when it comes to brewing a pot of dark roast coffee. Brewing time should be between 2:30 and 3 minutes in total. Brewing a standard dark roast requires using cooler water and less than three minutes. When using a cone-shaped filter in a pour-over coffee machine, the brew is at its best.

The grounds should then be placed in the filter. Next, in a circular motion, pour boiling water over the grounds until all of the water has soaked through them. Each brew cycle will take roughly three to five minutes and produce four cups of coffee.

A darker roast is better for brewing since it tastes good both hot and chilled. The deep roast flavors combine for a cool brew that packs a serious punch.

Whether you prefer your coffee made with a drip machine or a French press, these robusta beans will not disappoint.

Does Dark Roast Coffee Have More Caffeine?

Coffee that has been roasted more deeply tends to have a bolder flavor profile. Due to this, many people believe that it is chemically more powerful than regular coffee since it contains more caffeine. You can't always rely on this being the case.

Caffeine levels in brewed coffee, whether light or dark roasted, are essentially identical and depend almost entirely on the bean variety (Robusta is around twice the strength of Arabica, for example).

However, the common belief is that light roast coffees contain more caffeine than dark roast because less of the caffeine is lost during the quicker roasting process. As a result, it's possible that a light roast has a touch more caffeine than a dark roast. Nevertheless, caffeine content rarely shifts much across roasts. Seeing any noticeable change during roasting would require a temperature of over 600° F, although typical roasting temperatures are closer to 470° F.

Is Dark Roast Coffee More Bitter Than Other Types?

There's no denying that the bitterness of dark roast coffee surpasses that of lighter roasts.

The roasting of coffee beans is, chemically speaking, a process of pyrolysis, in which the bean is reduced to its elemental constituents. Basically, it's just carbon.

When the bean is dried, a chemical event called the Maillard reaction takes place, which causes the sugars in the bean to caramelize and the acids to degrade.

As the beans are roasted more, the sugars are broken down and the acids are almost all removed. This makes the bean taste bitterer since the volatile aromatic components are being depleted and very little sugars remain after the process.


So, what qualities should you seek out when comparing dark roast coffee brands? Your personal preferences will determine the correct response to this question.

Want to know which dark roast coffee blends will win awards in 2022? Here is a compilation of the best dark roasts we've ever tried. Given that each combination is ideal in its own way, we could go on and on about how wonderful they all are.

The objective of this blog post is not to compare the various dark roasts' flavor profiles or textures; doing so would be fruitless. As a result, we have compiled a list of the 10 best dark roast coffee beans from all over the world. Coffee lovers who share our devotion to starting the day with a perfect mug of java have been a great assistance. Is there anything here that you feel compelled to try? Which do you favor: hot or cold dark roast? Leave a comment if you know of any other excellent dark roast coffee combinations.

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