Is acidity a good or bad thing in coffee?

Posted by Kashmira Lal on

What's the go with acidity? I've always heard coffee was acidic, but I've come to learn that acidity is the most misunderstood term in coffee language. Coffee does have some acidity to it, but it's no more acidic than orange juice or beer. The acidity that we talk about in coffee is actually a term attributed to a range of tasting notes in your cuppa.

 

So when we refer to acidity we aren't talking about the level of pH balance, we are talking about specific flavour compounds. Some of the main acids we find are citric, malic, tartaric acids, or chlorogenic. These acids are associated with citrus, apple and wine flavours.

It's the acidity that helps make coffee so bright and crisp. Acidity is a sweetly tart vibrancy that lifts the coffee gives it dimension, to give it those complex flavours you love. 

The roasting process is what brings out the naturally occurring acids, and these acids are what give coffee it's complex characteristics. These bright acidic notes are more commonly found in single-origins and lighter roasted coffees.

Citric acid is the same acid that’s found in citrus fruits and contains notes of lemon, orange and when occurring with phosphoric acid, grapefruit.

Phosphoric acid tastes sweeter than most acids. It can turn an otherwise sour-tasting citrus flavour into a sweeter grapefruit- or mango-like one.

Malic acid is sometimes associated with hints of stone fruit, such as peaches or plums, but it’s more common to taste apple or pear in a coffee that has malic acid.

Chlorogenic acids are largely responsible for a coffee’s perceived acidity. Compared to other acids, they degrade rapidly in the roasting, which is why light roasts are described as 'bright and acidic more often than dark ones.

That means, with higher acidic coffees you will find more of the fruity brighter flavours, but with lower acidic coffee you will find more of the earthy, chocolate and spice flavours.

We offer blends on a range from low, medium to high acidity.

Our Blackall Range blend provides medium body with high acidity, the tasting notes are burst of bright fruits, lemon myrtle and honey.

Our Papua New Guinea Purosa Premium also provides medium body and high acidity, with tasting notes of kiwi berries, passion fruit and maple syrup.

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Reference:

Driftaway coffee. What is acidity in coffee? Available from: https://driftaway.coffee/what-is-acidity-in-coffee/