Dec 8, 2008|
Question

Dr. Brew:
What is there about decaf coffee that sometimes cause us so much trouble with the way water is adsorbed?
Jerry

Answer

Jerry,
Brewing deaffeinated coffees has been a challenge for a lot of coffee preparers.
I'll be the first to tell you I don't have the knowledge of all the effects of the decaffeination processes. When coffee beans are roasted for non-decaffeinated beverage the beans were processed primarilly to remove the wet (washed process) or dried (natural process) mucliege from the seeds/beans. When beans are processed for decaffeination they are saturated in water, chemicals or carbon dioxied. Through all of these processes to remove caffeine, additional bean solubles are removed including waxes and oils. Decaffeinated beans do not expand as far in the roasting process. This can lead to lower extraction rates due to smaller internal openings in the roast and ground coffee. As water is applied to the ground coffee the reaction of absorption and release of the extractable material from the decaffeinated coffee is altered compared to regular ground coffee. Decaffeinated coffee will generally take longer to brew, due to how the coffee absorbs and holds water during the brewing cycle. Contact your roaster/ coffee provider to learn more about the options they have for decaffeinated products. http://www.coffeeresearch.org/science/decaffeination.htm

Happy Brewing,

Dr. Brew

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