Kitchen

Best Coffee Beans: Unleashing the Perfect Brew with Dale's Top Picks

Written by Dale RichardsonUpdated: February 27, 2024

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There's nothing quite like that first-morning sip, is there? It's more than just a beverage, it's a way of life. So, how do you make sure that each cup is a masterpiece? The secret's in the beans, my friend. But not just any beans – the best coffee beans. Stick around, and I'll share everything I've learned from years of brewing and tasting. Ready to embark on a journey to the finest coffee experience you've ever had?

Here is a glance at the best Coffee Beans before we review them in depth further down:

The Current Best Coffee Beans In 2024

1. Taylor's of Harrogate Italian Coffee Beans

Overall rating (4.7)

Scored based on 1200 reviews

Freshness (4.9)

Flavour (4.7)

Value for money (4.6)

Consideration Points:

Single Origin: These beans aren't a single-origin variety, which might be a letdown if you're after a coffee with a very specific flavour profile that you can only get from beans grown in one specific region.

Roast Level: The Italian roast level is a major win here. We're talking a dark, full-bodied roast with a rich, intense flavour that's just the ticket if you're after a strong cup of joe.

Freshness: While the beans aren't ground to order, they are sealed in a foil bag for freshness. As long as you store them properly, you should still be able to enjoy a pretty fresh-tasting brew.

Bean Type: These are Arabica beans, my friend! They are generally considered to produce a better-tasting coffee than the alternative Robusta variety. Plus, they're sourced from sustainable, Rainforest Alliance Certified farms, which is always a bonus.

Packageing: While the foil packageing is a win for preserving freshness, it's a bit of a loss in terms of sustainability. If you're environmentally conscious, you might prefer a more eco-friendly packageing option.

Product Summary:

In your hands, or soon to be, are Taylor's of Harrogate Italian Coffee Beans. Not single-origin, unfortunately, but don't let that put you off. What they lack in that department, they more than make up for in roast level - they're a nice, dark Italian roast. Got a soft spot for a robust, strong coffee? This could be the one for you.

As for freshness, you're in pretty safe hands. They're sealed in a foil bag, so as long as you store 'em right, you'll have fresh coffee on demand. And the beans? Top-notch Arabica, sourced from sustainable, Rainforest Alliance Certified farms. That's a win-win in my book!

The packageing, though, is a bit of a mixed bag (pun absolutely intended). Yes, the foil is great for keeping your beans fresh, but it's not exactly a champion of the environment. If you're particularly green-minded, that could be a sticking point.

All in all, if you're after a bold, flavourful coffee and fancy supporting sustainable farming practises, Taylor's of Harrogate could be right up your street. Just bear in mind the packageing situation, and consider investing in a good storage solution to keep your beans at their best. After all, a good cuppa is worth a bit of effort.

Read all user reviews on Amazon

"Fabulous flavour."

"I have noticed with some beans you can get a bitter taste, I prefer a mild coffee and have been using these beans for a few months now and they are definitely my favourite, a lovely smooth taste with no bitterness. The product weight is just the right size to fill my coffee machine so no worries trying to keep fresh part used bags."

Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 25 September 2023

"Good beans"

"I always use these beans in my automatic bean to cup machine and have always liked the flavour of the coffee. Not the cheapest but you get what you pay for. Recommended"

Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 14 August 2023

"Great taste"

"Nice strong coffee"

Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 8 August 2023

Where to buy Taylor's of Harrogate Italian Coffee Beans?

2. Starbucks Blonde Espresso Roast Coffee'

Overall rating (4.7)

Scored based on 1993 reviews

Freshness (4.6)

Flavour (4.5)

Value for money (4.3)

Consideration Points:

Single Origin: Starbucks Blonde Espresso Roast Coffee is not a single-origin coffee. This means the beans are sourced from multiple farms and regions. While this allows Starbucks to maintain a consistent taste year-round, it can be seen as a loss for those seeking a unique flavour profile that can only be found in single-origin coffees.

Roast Level: The Starbucks Blonde Espresso Roast Coffee is a lighter roast, which is not common for espresso beans. This roast level brings out the sweet, vibrant notes of the beans, offering a unique twist on the traditional, darker roasted espresso beans.

Freshness: Starbucks ensures that its beans are shipped quickly after roasting, maintaining a high level of freshness upon arrival. This commitment to freshness guarantees that the beans retain their full flavour profile.

Bean Type: Starbucks Blonde Espresso Roast Coffee uses arabica beans, known for their smooth and rich flavour profile. Arabica beans are generally seen as superior to robusta beans, making this a win in terms of bean type.

Packageing: Starbucks Blonde Espresso Roast Coffee comes in airtight, resealable packageing. This design choice is a win as it allows for prolonged freshness of the beans, even after the package has been opened.

Product Summary:

The Starbucks Blonde Espresso Roast Coffee is a break from tradition with its light roast level, providing a bright and sweet flavour profile that stands apart from the typical darker roasted espresso beans. Although it lacks the unique flavours provided by single-origin coffees, Starbucks ensures consistency in taste by sourcing its beans from multiple farms and regions.

As far as freshness goes, Starbucks ships its beans soon after roasting to ensure that the coffee's vibrant flavours are preserved upon arrival. The company uses arabica beans for this product, which are favoured by many for their smooth and rich taste.

Finally, the packageing used for the Starbucks Blonde Espresso Roast Coffee is designed to maintain bean freshness. With an airtight and resealable package, you can be sure that your coffee will stay fresh for as long as possible, enabling you to savor the rich flavours of this unique espresso roast over time.

Read all user reviews on Amazon

"Best coffee beans"

"Tastes so smooth, I always use Starbucks beans"

Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 24 September 2023

"If you love Starbucks, you won't be disappointed"

"As with everything, sometimes you get what you pay for and that is true with this. I have tried many different brands, but I don't enjoy them as much as this one. Great freshness, the right size to fill most grinders and you get a discount on subscription which makes it cheaper than the supermarket most of the time."

Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 22 September 2023

"Beautiful roasted beans and full of flavour"

"The beans are fresh and light brown colour, not oily like the dark roast ones. These beans will not ruin your coffee machine. The flavour is light and smooth, similar to the Starbuck House blend. Great replacement for the expensive House blend ones. Highly recommend! Thanks Amazon!"

Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 15 September 2023

Where to buy Starbucks Blonde Espresso Roast Coffee'?

3. Lavazza Crema e Aroma Coffee Beans'

Overall rating (4.6)

Scored based on 16835 reviews

Airtight storage (4.3)

Value for money (4.3)

Freshness (4.3)

Flavour (4.3)

Scent (4.2)

Consideration Points:

Single Origin: Lavazza Crema e Aroma Coffee Beans are not single-origin. They're blended from beans sourced from different regions, so while the flavour profile is consistently maintained, they may lack the unique taste that a single-origin coffee might provide.

Roast Level: Lavazza Crema e Aroma Coffee Beans are medium-roasted, a level that tends to appeal to a broad audience. Medium roast is a great balance, offering a coffee flavour that's neither too bitter nor too light.

Freshness: Lavazza ensures its coffee beans are promptly shipped after roasting. This guarantees the beans remain fresh and full of flavour when they reach you.

Bean Type: Lavazza Crema e Aroma is a blend of Arabica and Robusta beans. The blend can be a win for those who appreciate the robustness and caffeine boost from Robusta and the nuanced flavours of Arabica. But for purists who prefer only Arabica, this might be seen as a loss.

Packageing: The packageing is well-designed, sturdy, and resealable, ensuring prolonged freshness of the beans even after the package is opened.

Product Summary:

Lavazza Crema e Aroma Coffee Beans provide a medium-roasted blend of Arabica and Robusta beans. While they're not sourced from a single region, the multiple sources ensure a consistent taste, and the blend offers a balance between the smooth flavours of Arabica and the robustness of Robusta.

Lavazza makes sure the beans are shipped soon after roasting, preserving their freshness and the integrity of their flavours. The use of both Arabica and Robusta beans in the blend can appeal to a broad range of coffee lovers, although it might not satisfy those who prefer a Arabica blend.

The packageing of Lavazza Crema e Aroma is a strong win, as it keeps the beans fresh over an extended period. The resealable and sturdy bag also protects the beans during transit, ensuring that they reach you in excellent condition. This way, you can savor the rich and balanced flavours of this coffee at their best, from the first cup to the last.

Read all user reviews on Amazon

"Taste"

"This is similar to the Rossa but seems a little less depth and has a little bit smoother taste. I brew in a Mocha Pot, this is a good coffee for price etc. Recommended"

Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 21 September 2023

"Good coffee"

"Quite a good taste, but not as good as Lavazza gold or Lavazza espresso. Not bad though."

Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 21 September 2023

"Good strength and flavour."

"These beans make great coffee but at first, due to a fault on my bean-to-cup automatic coffee machine, I was disappointed. It was only when the machine developed a terminal fault and was replaced with an identical new model that I realised that this coffee was good and my machine had been at fault although nothing was obviously wrong!"

Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 20 September 2023

Where to buy Lavazza Crema e Aroma Coffee Beans'?

4. Lavazza Crema e Aroma Coffee Beans - Blue

Overall rating (4.6)

Scored based on 10904 reviews

Airtight storage (4.7)

Flavour (4.4)

Value for money (4.4)

Freshness (4.3)

Scent (4.3)

Consideration Points:

Single Origin: Lavazza Crema e Aroma Coffee Beans - Blue, like its counterpart, is not a single-origin coffee. The beans are sourced from multiple regions. While this blend may provide a consistent flavour, it may not cater to those who appreciate the distinct nuances of a single-origin coffee.

Roast Level: These coffee beans are medium-roasted, striking a balance between bitterness and acidity. This roast level is widely appreciated and should cater to a broad range of coffee lovers' palates.

Freshness: Lavazza ensures the freshness of their coffee beans by promptly shipping them after roasting. This practise retains the beans' robust and full-bodied flavour upon arrival.

Bean Type: This blend uses a mix of Arabica and Robusta beans. For some, the balance between Arabica's nuanced flavours and Robusta's boldness is a win. However, for coffee enthusiasts who prefer purely Arabica, this could be a loss.

Packageing: The coffee beans are packaged in a sturdy, resealable bag, helping to maintain the beans' freshness over time. The quality packageing also provides protection during shipping, ensuring the beans arrive in excellent condition.

Product Summary:

Lavazza Crema e Aroma Coffee Beans - Blue offer a medium-roasted coffee experience that bridges the flavour gap between acidity and bitterness. Despite not being a single-origin coffee, this blend from multiple regions guarantees a consistent and balanced flavour profile.

To maintain the rich flavour, Lavazza promptly ships the beans after roasting, ensuring that customers receive fresh coffee beans. The blend comprises Arabica and Robusta beans, providing a mix that should please most coffee drinkers, barring those who specifically prefer only Arabica.

The product packageing deserves praise as well. The sturdy, resealable bag ensures the beans' freshness remains intact over an extended period, making sure you can enjoy the full-bodied flavour from the first cup to the last. The quality packageing also safeguards the beans during transportation, guaranteeing you receive them in optimal condition.

Read all user reviews on Amazon

"Coffee beans"

"Have not tried them yet but they seem very promising good quality and price"

Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 28 September 2023

"great blend"

"love all lavazza this is my favorite!"

Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 29 August 2023

"Smooth"

"Crema on the label and it’s the smoothest coffee I’ve put through my bean to cup machine yet. Think I’ll be sticking with this one."

Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 23 August 2023

Where to buy Lavazza Crema e Aroma Coffee Beans - Blue?

5. Amazon Brand - Solimo Coffee Beans

Overall rating (4.4)

Scored based on 7002 reviews

Value for money (4.5)

Freshness (4.4)

Airtight storage (4.4)

Flavour (4.1)

Consideration Points:

Single Origin: Solimo Coffee Beans are not a single-origin coffee. The beans are sourced from different locations, providing a consistent blend but may lack the distinctive notes characteristic of a single-origin coffee.

Roast Level: Solimo Coffee Beans are medium-roasted, a level that is typically well-received by a broad range of coffee enthusiasts, as it provides a well-rounded balance between acidity and richness.

Freshness: Solimo, as an Amazon brand, has a robust distribution network. This ensures that the beans are delivered to customers shortly after roasting, thereby preserving their freshness and full-bodied flavour.

Bean Type: Solimo uses a blend of Arabica and Robusta beans. While this combination appeals to many due to the balance between the smoothness of Arabica and the robustness of Robusta, coffee purists who prefer Arabica alone might see this as a downside.

Packageing: Solimo Coffee Beans are packaged in a sturdy, resealable bag, which not only helps to maintain freshness but also ensures the beans are protected during transit and arrive in excellent condition.

Product Summary:

The Amazon Brand - Solimo Coffee Beans provides a medium-roast blend that caters to a wide audience with its balanced flavour. Even though it's not a single-origin coffee, the consistent taste achieved through a blend of beans from various regions will satisfy many coffee lovers.

The brand takes advantage of Amazon's extensive distribution network to deliver freshly roasted beans, ensuring customers receive a product that retains its flavour and aroma. The mixture of Arabica and Robusta beans offers a balance between the smooth, nuanced flavours of Arabica and the bold, strong characteristics of Robusta. However, this might not cater to those who prefer pure Arabica.

The packageing is another strong point for Solimo Coffee Beans. Packaged in a robust, resealable bag, the beans' freshness is preserved for a prolonged period. The packageing also provides protection during shipping, ensuring the beans arrive in great condition, ready for you to brew and enjoy.

Read all user reviews on Amazon

"Nice coffee"

"Nice tasting coffee."

Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 26 September 2023

"Excellent value"

"These beans have a great taste and the bag seems to just keep going!"

Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 17 September 2023

"Great value Arabica beans"

"Best price I could find for this amount of beans. They’re arabica and well roasted - great taste."

Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 16 September 2023

Where to buy Amazon Brand - Solimo Coffee Beans?

6. San Francisco Bay Colombian Supremo Whole Coffee Beans

Overall rating (4.3)

Scored based on 6457 reviews

Value for money (4.3)

Freshness (4.2)

Airtight storage (4.1)

Flavour (4)

Consideration Points:

Single Origin: San Francisco Bay Colombian Supremo is a single-origin coffee. It originates from Colombia, a country known for producing high-quality coffee. This ensures a distinct flavour profile that is unique to its origin.

Roast Level: These beans are medium-roasted, which is a preferred roast level for many as it offers a balanced taste, preserving both the natural flavours of the beans and the characteristics developed during roasting.

Freshness: San Francisco Bay Colombian Supremo guarantees fresh beans; however, as I am unable to verify the time between roasting and delivery, it may vary.

Bean Type: This product is made with 100% Arabica beans, known for their superior taste and quality compared to other types, such as Robusta.

Packageing: The beans come in a well-sealed bag to protect the beans during transit and to help maintain their freshness over time.

Product Summary:

San Francisco Bay Colombian Supremo Whole Coffee Beans offers a high-quality, single-origin coffee experience. Originating from Colombia, a country renowned for its coffee production, these beans bring forward a distinctive flavour profile unique to its source.

The medium roast level is a win, maintaining a balanced taste that showcases both the natural bean flavours and the characteristics imparted through the roasting process. The use of 100% Arabica beans ensures a high-quality cup of coffee, though this may appeal more to coffee aficionados who prefer the nuanced taste of Arabica over the robust flavour of Robusta.

While the brand commits to delivering fresh beans, the exact freshness may vary depending on the time between roasting and delivery. Nonetheless, the beans are well-packaged in a sealed bag to protect them during shipping and to help preserve their freshness over time. Overall, San Francisco Bay Colombian Supremo offers a high-quality coffee experience, particularly appealing to those who appreciate the unique characteristics of single-origin coffees.

Read all user reviews on Amazon

"Beans"

"Lovely flavour"

Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 13 September 2023

"A super treat for real coffee lovers!"

"One of the best there is out there! The dark roast provides an amazing taste. Glad to discover it."

Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 27 August 2023

"Happy Americans"

"Purchased to keep some US based friends happy. They really liked the blend and took the rest of the bag on their travels."

Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 26 August 2023

Where to buy San Francisco Bay Colombian Supremo Whole Coffee Beans?

7. illy Classic Roast Coffee Beans Medium

Overall rating (4.6)

Scored based on 7968 reviews

Flavour (4.4)

Freshness (4.4)

Value for money (4.1)

Consideration Points:

Single Origin: The Classic Roast Coffee Beans Medium product is not marketed as single origin, indicating that the beans may come from various regions. This could mean a complex flavour but also less predictability in taste.

Roast Level: The product clearly indicates that it's a medium roast, which is a versatile choice appealing to a broad range of coffee drinkers due to its balance of flavours.

Freshness: The product doesn't provide specific details about roast dates, which makes it hard to determine the level of freshness. However, the packageing is designed to maintain freshness as long as possible.

Bean Type: The product description doesn't provide information about the type of coffee beans used. For coffee connoisseurs, knowing whether they're getting Arabica or Robusta beans could be a significant deciding factor.

Packageing: Classic Roast Coffee Beans Medium comes in a tightly sealed bag, which helps preserve the flavour and freshness of the coffee beans.

Product Summary:

Classic Roast Coffee Beans Medium offers a versatile medium roast coffee, which can appeal to a wide range of coffee lovers due to its balanced flavour. However, the lack of single-origin and bean type information may disappoint some coffee connoisseurs who prefer knowing the specific origin of their beans or whether they're getting Arabica or Robusta.

The freshness of the coffee beans might be a slight concern due to the absence of roast dates, but the packageing of the product, a tightly sealed bag, is designed to protect and maintain the beans' freshness for as long as possible.

Overall, Classic Roast Coffee Beans Medium seems to cater more to the casual coffee drinker who enjoys a balanced flavour profile and is less concerned about the specifics of bean origin or type.

Read all user reviews on Amazon

"nice coffee"

"they should spend a little less money on the tin and offer a cheaper price, the coffee is good"

Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 16 September 2023

"I love illy coffee"

"It is just a really good coffee☺️"

Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 12 September 2023

"Top quality coffee"

"The packaging is so Italian"

Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 6 September 2023

Where to buy illy Classic Roast Coffee Beans Medium?

Why are coffee beans better than their alternatives?

  • Freshness: The minute coffee beans are ground, they start losing their flavour. With whole beans, you can grind just what you need when you need it, ensuring maximum freshness. Pre-ground coffee or instant? They can't hold a candle to that.
  • Flavour Profile: Different beans have different flavour profiles, and when you buy whole beans, you can explore a world of taste. From fruity African beans to full-bodied South American ones, the choice is yours. Can you get that with instant coffee? I think not!
  • Brewing Method: Different brewing methods require different grind sizes. With whole beans, you can grind your coffee to the perfect size for your preferred brewing method, be it espresso, French press, or drip. Try doing that with pre-ground coffee!
  • Quality: As a rule of thumb, the best quality coffee is sold as whole beans. Why? Because the quality can't hide once you grind. If there are any imperfections in the coffee, they'll be evident in the taste. You can't be sure of the quality with pre-ground or instant coffee.
  • Experience: There's something satisfying about the ritual of grinding your coffee beans. It engages the senses - the sound of the grinder, the smell of the fresh grounds. It's a part of the coffee experience that you just don't get with alternatives.
  • Long Shelf Life: Whole coffee beans have a longer shelf life than their ground counterparts. If you're not a daily coffee drinker, this could be a significant advantage.

In a nutshell, coffee beans offer unmatched freshness, a range of flavour profiles, adaptability to different brewing methods, superior quality, an engageing experience, and a longer shelf life. So what do you think, ready to make the switch to coffee beans? The coffee pot's on – shall we get grinding?

Consideration points when buying coffee beans:

Now that we know why coffee beans are worth the investment, how do we go about finding them? Well, it's all about knowing what to look for. Here are my top tips for selecting the best beans for your brew:

  1. Single-origin blend: Do you prefer beans from a single region or a blend of beans from different parts of the world? Single-origin beans offer a unique taste of their specific region, while blends can provide a more balanced flavour.
  2. Roast level: Light, medium, or dark? The roast level directly impacts the flavour and strength of your coffee. Light roasts are bright and acidic, while dark roasts are bold and robust. Choose the one that suits your taste buds best!
  3. Freshness: Coffee beans are at their peak flavour just after roasting, so always check the roast date on the packageing. The fresher, the better!
  4. Bean type: Arabica or Robusta? Arabica beans are known for their smooth, nuanced flavours, while Robusta beans pack a punch with their higher caffeine content and bold taste.
  5. Packageing: Look for airtight packageing with a one-way valve to keep your beans fresh and full of flavour.

So, there you have it, folks! With these tips in mind, you're well on your way to finding the best coffee beans and enjoying the ultimate coffee experience. 

The current best coffee beans in 2023

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