wikiHow to Like Coffee

Coffee is a very flavorful, popular beverage that can be exceptionally enjoyable. Expertly brewed coffee or espresso made from freshly roasted coffee beans can make one's day all that much more enjoyable. Coffee is a great pick-me-up, and is very rich in antioxidants. If you're not a fan of coffee, or just haven't gotten around to drinking much coffee, read on to learn how to enjoy and appreciate coffee.


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    Learn about coffee. Coffee has an interesting and world-changing history behind it. For at least the past 600 years, people have been consuming coffee through various bans, edicts, promotions, petitions, revolutions and more. (It is possible that coffee's origins are much, much older but that's something you'll find out through research.)

    Coffee drinking, growing and general use continues to be a source of political, ethical and gourmand discussions today. Knowing more may help to encourage you to try different varieties that you may not have considered before. For instance, did you know that some shade-grown coffee protects biodiversity? And were you aware that coffee is a very rich source of polyphenol antioxidants, and may help to prevent liver cancer and cardiovascular disease? Such facts may spur a new appreciation of this well-loved beverage.
    • Some good books to begin your exploration of coffee history with include:
      • Mary Banks, Christine McFadden and Catherine Atkinson, The World Encyclopedia of Coffee, (1999), ISBN 0-7548-0197-7
      • Mary Banks, Coffee, (1998), ISBN 1-85868-610-5.
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    Try all of the different types of coffee. There is such a wide variety of coffee that it'd be a shame to base a dislike of it on some granulated instant coffee that sat at the back of grandma's cupboard way longer than it should have. There are two main species of coffee tree: Coffee Arabica (arabica) and Coffee Canephora (robusta). Specialty coffees are usually arabica as it has the finest aroma and flavor, while robusta is a more astringent, cheaper coffee with higher levels of caffeine usually used in instant coffees. Coffee grown in different parts of the world has different flavors, aromas, and caffeine content. Some coffee types may be perceived as harsh, while other coffee, such as Kona coffee, may be very mild to your taste buds. Larger, fuller coffee beans are generally more prized, while the very small pea-berry beans are said to have a lower acid content, and therefore coffee made from them may be easier on the stomach. Few beans from a single source can produce a well-rounded coffee on their own and a coffee blender will usually mix beans for the best outcome. However, that said, there are a few unblended versions that are superb although expensive such as the high-grown arabicas. You'll find such coffees from specialty coffee or gourmet shops.
    • Realize that "single-origin" coffee is blended, using beans from the same country, whereas "unblended coffee" is from beans from one source.
    • Coffee labeled arabica must contain only that variety. Examples include Mocha, Manilla, Bourbon (aromatic coffee); Colombia or Menado (very mild coffee); or Haiti (full-bodied coffee).
    • Without a label, the coffee is either robusta (cheap) or a mixture of arabica and robusta (more expensive).
    • If you drink instant coffee, you may never like coffee. It is the convenience form of coffee and it is definitely second best. If your aim is to learn to like coffee, it's recommended that you steer clear of this version of it.
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    Seek out the very best coffee that is available where you live. It may be that once you taste truly excellent coffee, you will realize how truly wonderful coffee can be. Excellent coffee should be made fresh from freshly roasted coffee beans, so try to find a cafe or market that roasts their beans daily, or make your own coffee from freshly roasted beans. For top quality espresso, seek out a cafe that uses the finest espresso machine and employs a skilled barista.
    • The freshness of coffee begins to change the moment that the roasting process has been completed. However, packaging technology has improved remarkably in the past few decades, ensuring that the freshness is maintained until the packaging is opened. Once opened, keep it in its packaging but place the whole packaging into an airtight container with the top of the packaging folded down and shut firmly. Place this in the refrigerator for the longest preservation of the flavor.
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    Know the coffee bean roast levels. The depth of the roasting impacts the flavor and it may well be here that your dislike of coffee is founded and can be turned around once you better understand the roasting levels. High quality coffee beans that have excellent flavor in their own right should only receive a light or pale roast because this allows all the flavor of the coffee to come through. Of course, that also means that if the coffee is not so good, a light roast will produce a less than optimal flavor.
    The next level of roast is light-medium, medium or brown. In America it's also known as "city roast". This is the everyday coffee that most people have. Then there are the darker roasts, know as French, Dutch, Viennese, New Orleans, continental, after-dinner, Italian roasts. There are many choices and the only way to find out what works for you is to taste test!
    • Light roast is good for breakfast and generally requires the addition of milk or cream to lessen the acidity.
    • Some coffee beans are coated with glucose, gum arabic or vegetable oil. This makes them appear very shiny and black and they keep longer and while the resulting coffee will taste full-bodied, it will also be slightly syrupy.
    • When purchasing coffee beans, look for the assurance that there is no more than 10 percent of faults in the beans if purchasing a "superior" coffee.
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    Consider adding some milk, fresh cream, and sugar. This will make your coffee taste milder than having it straight. Depending on your personal tastes, you may like to only have milk, cream or sugar or combine them. One can also add steamed frothy milk (for a latte or cappuccino), chocolate powder, muscovado or raw sugar, vanilla sugar and other gourmet ingredients.
    • The more "acidic" coffees such as the arabicas are best with milk or cream, as this allows the acidity to dull somewhat while still allowing the delicate taste to come through.
    • Some coffees are best drunk without the addition of milk or cream. Coffees that have strong flavors like wine, cheese, game or smokiness tend to be best drunk as they are.
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    Don't be afraid to blend coffees. The taste of coffee is a very personal experience and by blending you may be able to create versions that you enjoy the most. One famous blend is the Mocha-Mysore blend that creates a third flavor. Try your own blends to see what you can produce.
    • Aim to combine coffees that have complementary characteristics. For example, blend acidic with sweet or thin with full-bodied.
    • When experimenting with blending, it's a good idea to keep notes so that you remember what does and does not work as part of the blend.
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    Join or start a coffee club and ask questions. Remember in a coffee environment you will be more encouraged. There are online coffee appreciation societies that you can search for on the internet. If you are able to try coffee tastings, here are the things to look for:
    • Aroma – this is the fragrance of the freshly ground and brewed coffee
    • Acidity – this indicates the pleasant "brightness" of the coffee and will vary by altitude and quality
    • Body – this concerns the coffee's texture and weight in your mouth. If the coffee is thin or light in body, it will taste watery; if it is full-bodied, the texture will be heavier
    • Flavor – once the aroma, acidity and body have been explored, the taste of the coffee is its flavor
    • Finish – this describes the residual feeling of the coffee's taste on your tongue.
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    Hang out with the gourmet coffee crowd and in trendy cafes. Or find some coffee joints where people like to have a good discussion about intellectual topics. Coffee has historically been used to spur intellectual thought and conversation in social settings.
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    Be prepared to give it time – coffee is an acquired taste. Starting out with a sweet Mocha Frappuccino, moving on to a latte (coffee made with hot milk), and then to a regular steaming cup of the stuff will help you to gradually learn to like coffee. That way, you can find what method you prefer, what roast, what company, and so forth that you like best... and do so slowly. If you want to try making different types of coffee at home, here are some suggestions to begin with:
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    Try coffee in foods. Many people who don't like coffee as a drink find its flavor in food is delicious and appetizing enough to help them enjoy coffee. Here are some ideas:
    • Chocolate chip coffee cake
    • Cinnamon coffee cake
    • Brownie nut cranberry coffee cake
    • Tiramisu
    • Mocha coffee cookies
    • Apple coffee cake
    • Cafe parfait
    • Coffee figs
    • Coffee flan.


  • Darker coffee beans contain less caffeine because they have been roasted more. Before being roasted, coffee beans are green and contain the most caffeine, but have almost no flavor.
  • You may feel compelled to drink Fair Trade Coffee. This coffee is labelled and certified by the FLO-CERT, FairTrade Labeling Organization Certification. Organizations with this label buy coffee from farmers at fairer price, skipping the middlemen. Or, better yet, look for a "Farm Friendly Direct" label. While there is no international certification for it, the company will most likely be more than willing to prove that they have a long-term, mutually beneficial working relationship with growers. With this concept, thousands of dollars are not wasted on the annual bureaucratic certification of a company and can be returned to the farmers.
  • Like fingerprints, no two beans brands, roasts, or brew methods are the same. French Roast at Starbucks is usually not the same as a French Roast at Joe Mugg's or Daily Grind, or whatever your local roaster/coffee shop is. Taking the same coffee and brewing in a home style maker will differ from that same coffee made with a French press, or using it in an espresso maker.
  • Drink it often and you'll begin to like it.
  • Higher quality beans and roasters will yield better coffee, and often the recommended strength can be reduced to make a more satisfying cup (for example, Starbucks coffee of the day, try 7/8ths a cup of their coffee of the day, adding the last eighth as hot water to slightly dilute it, or even further to three quarters regular and one quarter hot water. Note also that dilution is Starbucks' recommended way of changing the taste rather than reducing the amount of coffee used in your brew method.


  • Coffee contains caffeine, which is addictive. Withdrawal symptoms such as headaches and shakiness are common in those that consume excessive amounts and then go without or attempt to cut back.
  • Keep your coffee stored in an airtight container in the cool. The staler the coffee, the less delightful it tastes. Coffee loses flavor very quickly once ground, so aim to only grind that which you'll be using straight away. If you cannot grind at home, purchase smaller amounts of freshly ground coffee more regularly.
  • Storing coffee/or whole beans in the freezer or refrigerator is a myth. The freezer will dry them out, and the fridge is too humid. The only way to keep coffee fresh is to limit its exposure to oxygen. Either vacuum seal it, or keep in a mason-type jar with an airtight lid.
  • Coffee, while a great source of antioxidants, is not a substitute for a healthy diet rich in fruits and vegetables, regular exercise and fresh air, all of which have the potential to give you a more natural source of energy.

Things You'll Need

  • Different types of coffee, coffee beans

Sources and Citations

  • Bonita JS, Mandarano M, Shuta D, Vinson J. Coffee and cardiovascular disease: In vitro, cellular, animal, and human studies. Pharmacol Res 2007; 55(3): 187-198. PMID 17368041 – research source – research source
  • Lopez-Galilea I, de Pena MP, Cid C. Correlation of selected constituents with the total antioxidant capacity of coffee beverages: Influence of the brewing procedure. J Agric Food Chem 2007; 55(15): 6110-6117. PMID 17608497 – research source
  • Bravi F, Bosetti C, Tavani A, Bagnardi V, Gallus S, Negri E, Franceschi S, La Vecchia C. Coffee drinking and hepatocellular carcinoma risk: A meta-analysis. Hepatology 2007. PMID 17580359 – research source
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