If your doctor has told you to cut back or even eliminate caffeine you probably left the office in a state of semi-panic. Coffee holds a special place in many people's daily routine. It's not always the caffeine that makes people love coffee, for some it is the flavor and aroma that excite the senses. So what are you to do now that you can't enjoy your piping hot mug of hazelnut coffee? Don't despair, despite what you might know, gourmet coffee is available in decaffeinated varieties.
Gourmet coffee producers finally realized that they had to produce decaffeinated versions to keep up with the ever-growing population of health wise individuals. The taste of decaf coffees may be slightly different than that of regular roast coffees but it can still be flavored and have a nice flavor to them.
Typically there are two methods for decaffeinating coffee. With either of the processes it is done before the beans are roasted and a little of the flavor of the bean is lost. One process uses a solvent to absorb the caffeine from the beans and then they are washed to remove the solvent.
The alternative process uses a method called the Swiss Water method. There are no chemicals used, which for some people is important. The coffee beans are instead treated with hot water and steam to remove the caffeine; however, they also lose some of their oils which is where their flavor lies.
In order to retain more flavor during the decaffeination process, the very best green coffee beans must be used. This of course means you, the consumer, will pay more for the coffee, but you won't be as disappointed with the flavor.
Once the coffee beans are decaffeinated, gourmet coffee companies can create those wonderful flavors coffee enthusiasts have come to love. Not every coffee bean or variety is available in a decaf version. If you want a rich Jamaican or Ethiopian decaf coffee you will be disappointed. Part of the richness in these coffees is in the caffeine.
Where to find Decaf Gourmet Coffees
Your local grocer likely carries some flavored coffees in decaf, but to find the truly gourmet, flavorful versions you should look to gourmet shops, either online or in your local area. For true, full flavor be prepared to pay a little more than your typical shelf brand decafs.
Arabica Coffee the Arabica Reserve Blend Decaf coffee is an excellent decaffeinated coffee that does not have that lingering after taste that many cheaper decafs do.
One of the top rated decaffeinated coffees available, as judged by Food & Wine Magazine comes from Volcanica Coffee. Volcanica Coffee beans come from some of the best coffee growing regions in the world such as Jamaica, Costa Rica, and Hawaii. The most popular of their coffees is the Costa Rican Blend.
Coffee enthusiasts who are looking for both a decaf coffee and an organic coffee should try Caffe Appassionato. These organically grown coffee beans are processed using the Swiss Water method and roasted at very low temperatures to create a near perfect decaf coffee.
While there are many shelf brands of decaffeinated coffee available, true coffee lovers will find more satisfaction in the beans that have been carefully processed just for decaf lovers. Buying from the local grocer may save some money but in the end these coffees will leave a bitter taste in your mouth.