Best Dark Roast Coffee
How Could I describe Dark Roast Coffee...?
Each way of preparing coffee is as uniquely different as human personalities. The roast profile and brewing technique give your coffee a personality - a distinct mix of flavors and aroma. Dark roast coffee takes pride in its bold and sophisticated character that awakens any person’s senses.
This article will discuss what and how to look for the perfect dark roast coffee for you. Alongside a guide is a list of the best dark roast coffees on the market.
Read our Best Dark Roast Coffee Review to find out.
Our Best Dark Roast Coffee for 2021
- Kicking Horse Coffee, Kick Ass, Dark Roast, Whole Bean, Certified Organic - (Editors choice - High Quality)
- Koffee Kult Coffee Beans Dark Roasted - Highest Quality, Whole Bean Coffee - (Runner up)
- Real Good Coffee Co Whole Bean French Roast Extra Dark Coffee Beans, 2 Pound Bag - (Amazing Price)
- AmazonFresh Dark Roast Whole Bean Coffee, 32 Ounce - (Affordable Product)
- Starbucks Dark Roast Whole Bean Coffee - Espresso Roast - 100% Arabica - (Great Product)
- Cafe Don Pablo 2LB Subtle Earth Organic, Dark Roast, Whole Bean Coffee
Fresh Roasted Coffee LLC, Organic Black Knight Coffee, Artisan Blend, Dark Roast, Whole Bean
Kicking Horse Coffee, Kick Ass, Dark Roast, Whole Bean, Certified Organic
- 100% Organic
- Made from high quality Arabica seeds.
- Deep and delicious flavor
- Fair Trade and Environment-friendly certified
- Amicable with various brewing methods
- Packaging is not re-sealable
- Access may be limited in some countries
Kicking Horse is among the top favorites for its smoky and strong flavor that lingers in the mouth. The Canadian brand takes pride in its 100% organic and shade-grown Arabica seeds cultivated from the rich lands of Indonesia and South America. The cultivation and origins of the coffee beans impart an exquisite aroma to the coffee.
We have hung out in the Kicking Horse Roastery in Canmore Alberta, for some days, consuming many cups of delightful cofffee a day,unable to leave because of our love of this brand.
You may use various brewing methods such as French press, cold brew, drip machine, and pour over to make yourself a cup of delicious dark roast coffee.
Our personal favorite is to drink French press, on a cold day, when fog sits low on the Columbia River. To sit and sip, and watch the fog disolve is pure delight.
Moreover, the company strives to fulfill its responsibility to society by ensuring fair trade between farmers and consumers. They also commit to sustainable production by employing climate and environment-friendly practices. The company is a leader is making sure that it is a safe, accepting, and conducive working space for anyone.
The only issues floating around Kicking Horse dark roast coffee is their poor packaging and limited access. The coffee bag is not entirely resealable that makes storage quite difficult. Although not entirely, access and delivery of the product are limited, especially in other continents.
Yet, all in all, Kicking Horse dark roast coffee might just be the push you need to wake up and kick ass.
Koffee Kult Coffee Beans Dark Roasted - Highest Quality, Whole Bean Coffee
- Bold, and strong flavor
- Earthy aroma
- 100% made from Arabica seeds
- Resealable packaging
- Does not meet organic food standards
- Absence of certifications
Koffee Kult Dark roast coffee is another popular choice in the coffee circle. The coffee is made from 100% Arabica seeds grown and harvested from Guatemala, Columbia, and Sumatra, homes of exotic and aromatic coffee beans.
People commend this artisan brand for its bold and strong flavors that feel smooth and deep in the mouth. The aroma of the coffee is also enough to pull you out of bed.
Most importantly, Koffee Kult makes sure to deliver only freshly roasted coffee beans at your doorsteps. They immediately ship their products within hours of roasting to preserve their freshness. The packaging is very reliable too as it comes with a sealable bag.
However, if you prefer organic-grown products, this brand may not be for you. Although their beans are “organically sourced”, the coffee still fails to meet the standards of organic foods. Moreover, certification logos seem to be absent on their packaging and website.
Putting these concerns aside, Koffee Krust is another brand worth a shot, or two, or three.
Real Good Coffee Co Whole Bean French Roast Extra Dark Coffee Beans, 2 Pound Bag
- Flavorful and aromatic
- Made from 100% high quality Arabica seeds
- Suitable for all types of coffee brewers
- Sustainable production
- Freshness depends on the batch
- A little bit pricey
Many coffee drinkers enjoy the extra bold but slightly sweet flavor of this French dark roast from Real Good Coffee Company. The company boasts of the Mediterranean spice anise and raspberry undertones that you can discern while sipping your coffee.
Furthermore, the coffee beans originating from the central and southern regions of America are proven 100% organic.
This brand is easy to prepare, as it goes perfectly well with all types of brewers like drip machine, espresso maker, French press, Aeropress, and Moka pot.
On top of all these, the company follows sustainable and fair production that aims to protect the interests of the farmers, consumers, and environment.
However, freshness is not always guaranteed with Real Good Coffee Company. Inconsistencies in freshness were observed and reported in some batches.
The coffee does seem to be a little bit pricey as compared to other competing brands.
They have developed a lot of love from coffee lovers over the years as this coffee brand has been in business for more than 30 years, so they obviosuly know how to take good care of your dark roast.
AmazonFresh Dark Roast Whole Bean Coffee, 32 Ounce
- Stronger roasted and smoky flavor
- Made from 100% premium Arabica coffee
- Might be too strong for some
Amazon home brews another favorite of coffee enthusiasts. The dark roast coffee is produced from premium quality Arabica seeds gathered from Central and South America.
Aside from its elegant flavors and captivating aroma, the Amazon brands ensure that you receive only the freshest coffee. In their determination to deliver this promise, roasted coffees are immediately packed, and come with a one-way freshness valve.
Many of the brand’s patrons are fond of the smoky and chocolatey flavors of the dark roast, although some may find it too strong and repulsive.
Furthermore, the company guarantees that its products are manufactured and distributed sustainably and fairly.
Amazon Fresh Dark Roast Whole Bean Coffee packs a good combination of flavor, aroma, and freshness.
For price and freshness this Amazon Fresh Dark Roast is right up there for value and quality. If you are an Amazon Prime member shipping is free, an added benefit.
Starbucks Dark Roast Whole Bean Coffee - Espresso Roast - 100% Arabica
- Sustainable and ethical sourcing
- Made from 100% Arabica coffee beans
- Robust, fuller- body, and bold flavors
- Amicable to various coffee brewing methods
- Strong aroma
- Taste can be too pungent for some drinkers
- Coffee bean oils sometimes clog brewers
Starbucks has perfectly planted itself as a leader and innovator in the coffee industry. One of their best products is their espresso roast that tastes very strong, but with a little touch of sweetness. This goes perfectly with steamed milk to make the vastly popular Caffe Latte.
The rich reservoir of flavors and aroma in their dark roast is attributed to their premium quality Arabica beans. More importantly, Starbucks ensures that its beans are grown and sourced sustainably and ethically.
If you prefer your coffee subtle and friendlier, this may not be the product for you. The taste can be too intense and sometimes too pungent for some.
Moreover, the rich oils on the surface of the beans can accumulate through time, ending up clogging your bean grinder. our solution? We find that wiping the grinder down with a damp cloth eliminates this issue.
Still, anyone would be thrilled by the idea of taking home and making their own Starbucks coffee.
Cafe Don Pablo 2LB Subtle Earth Organic, Dark Roast, Whole Bean Coffee
- 100% Organic, GMO Free Certified
- Strong and bold flavor
- Customer service
- Suitable to various brewing methods
- Made from Arabica coffee beans
- Too oily
- Some find it lacking in flavor
- Absence of certifications
The dark roast coffee from Subtle Earth Organic is a viable option for you. It is made from Honduran Arabica seeds by professional artisans. The coffee has a deep and intense feeling on the mouth.
Unique to this company is its return policy. Customers may avail of a return policy if they feel disappointed with the product’s freshness.
You also do not have to worry because any brewing method can accommodate these beans.
Furthermore, several issues like oiliness, lacking flavor, and missing certifications haunt the company.
Despite these concerns, this dark roast coffee remains a usual morning companion.
Fresh Roasted Coffee LLC, Organic Black Knight Coffee, Artisan Blend, Dark Roast, Whole Bean
- Made from 100% Arabica seeds
- USDA Organic
- Fair Trade Certified
- Kosher Certified
- Sustainable production
- Flavorful and Aromatic
- Well packaged
- Freshly roasted
- Flavors may be too strong and intense
The Fresh Roasted Coffee LLC takes pride in their all-natural and 100% Arabica-made dark roast coffees.
Many people enjoy the richness of flavor and aroma of the coffee. At the same time, the company delivers only freshly roasted coffee beans to make sure that you will have the best time with your cup of coffee.
However, some may still find this dark roast too strong and difficult to drink. This could be resolved by mixing it with perfectly steamed milk.
On top of these things, the coffee is certified organic, fair trade, and environment friendly.
What is Dark Roast Coffee?
Roasting is the art and science of releasing the extricate flavors hidden inside the green coffee beans. During this process, the coffee beans are brought to high temperatures until they reach their peak aroma, acidity, flavor, and quality. The difference in temperature and period gives birth to a spectrum of coffee roast.
Dark roast coffee results from a longer period of roasting under an extremely high temperature (465-480 degrees Fahrenheit). Thus, dark roast coffee beans appear darker in color, usually ranging from dark brown to black. They also look shinier due to the rich surface oils.
Roasting diminishes the original flavor of the coffee beans that explains the smoky and sometimes burnt taste of the dark roast coffee. Generally, dark roast coffee is often characterized as old school and classic with its nutty and strong taste. Most people often find this coffee bitter, but never boring.
Types of Dark Roasts
Dark roast coffee exists under many names. Your favorite cup can be one of them.
According to coffee experts, Vienna roast starts when the temperature hits 465 °F marked by the second cracking. The coffee beans lose their original flavors as they continue to develop a darker color and stronger aroma.
Yet, among the dark roast coffee beans, Vienna roast has the lightest and most subtle flavor. Roasting allows oils from coffee beans to resurface thus adding a distinguishable taste that sets Vienna roast apart from other types of coffee.
Roasting the coffee beans at a temperature of approximately 474 °F would push a second cracking near its end, thus bringing out more oils on the surface. As a result, smoky and roasted flavors become more prevalent in French roast. There are also traces of berry-like and citrusy sweetness that blend well with the deep smoky flavor of roasting.
Alongside these flavors, French roast coffee beans are characterized by their dark, chocolaty near burnt color.
Going deeper into the dark roast spectrum is the famous Italian roast coffee. Its roasting takes a relatively long time and sometimes a higher temperature around 486 °F. Therefore, Italian roast has an extremely dark color imparting bitter and burnt tastes to its general flavor.
Aside from its very dark color, the Italian roast coffee beans are noticeably thin bodied with a shiny exterior.
This type of dark roast has one of the strongest flavors among all the coffee flavors. The powerful flavor and aroma of Italian roast coffee results from roasting the coffee beans at an extremely high temperature.
Continental roast coffee is often mixed with milk since many people find the bitter taste too strong and repulsive.
Espresso roast lies in the final stretch of the dark roast spectrum. The coffee beans are roasted to the highest possible temperature (without burning) resulting in the complete elimination of natural oils and flavors. All that’s left are the smoky, bitter, and burnt flavors.
Light vs. Medium Roast vs. Dark Roast Coffee: What is the Difference?
The rich culture of coffee drinking in the world gave birth to diverse types of roasts ranging from light to dark roast coffees.
Despite the lightness of color and absence of surface oil, light roast coffee is packed with unique flavors that anyone can enjoy. This type of roasting ensures that the coffee beans retain their original aroma and flavors, thus imparting unique blends to drinkers. Most importantly, among medium and dark roast coffees, the light roast has the highest caffeine content and acidity.
Medium roast coffee has a slightly darker color than the light roasted ones, but still no visible oils on the surface. Moreover, unlike light roast, this type balances the natural flavors of the coffee beans and the flavors attributed to roasting.
How to Choose the Best Dark Roast Coffee Beans?
Type of Beans
There are four major types of coffee beans cultivated and marketed in the world, namely Arabica, Robusta, Liberica, and Excelsa.
Among these four, Arabica and Robusta are the best candidates for dark roast coffee. Arabica beans are well recommended for their superior quality, flavor, and aroma. The coffee bean is believed to have smoother and sweeter feels in the mouth.
On the other hand, Robusta has higher caffeine levels than Arabica. As a result, the color and depth of flavor are intensified, appealing to more coffee lovers.
The dark roast coffee takes pride in its smoky, bitter, and strong flavors that root from the roasting technique and level employed. Depending on your preference, the roasting level of dark roast may go anywhere between 430- 480 F.
The origin of the coffee beans does not matter in dark roast coffee. This is mainly because origin affects the natural flavors of coffee beans, which the dark roast coffee removes.
The flavor of the coffee bean does not matter in dark roast coffee since its aroma and flavor are hugely attributed to the roast level employed on the coffee beans.
Freshly roasted coffee beans are the best for dark roast coffee. This is because of the oils. Long storage time often leads to the oxidation of oils on the surface of coffee beans. The loss of oils will lead to a bland taste of the coffee.
Certifications are also an equally important consideration in choosing coffee beans. These features ensure the quality and safety of the product.
Unknown to many, brewing time and temperature influence the final taste of your dark roast coffee. Experts suggest brewing the dark roast coffee at a lower temperature under a shorter time. This is due to the thinner and more porous body of dark roast coffee beans (or grounds) that make extraction faster and easier.
Among the seven, the best recommended dark roast for you is the espresso roast from Starbucks. It tops the other six for its exquisite, deep, and unique flavors. The tints of caramelized sweetness blend rather perfectly with the intensity of the roasted taste of the coffee.
Moreover, Starbucks dark roast reeks of a powerful aroma that can awaken your senses, any time of the day, thus making the experience more special.
Over the years, Starbucks has been determined to convert their operations to 100% sustainable and environment friendly that further prove its integrity as a company.
Nevertheless, choosing the best coffee remains a matter of personal preference. Dig in and have a cup of perfectly roasted coffee!