“One could decaffeinate coffee purely with hot water, but this would also entirely de-flavor it,” says explains Doug Welsh, Peet’s VP Coffee & Roastmaster. “Water, after all, is what we utilize to dissolve all the yummy stuff into our cup.”
While some processes work with solvents, there are two non-solvent-based options: Swiss Water Procedure and Carbon Dioxide Procedure. These essentially involve stripping the coffee of the caffeine chemicals, while strategically leaving behind or reintroducing the compounds that give coffee its flavor. While there’s nothing inherently wrong with solvent-based processes, I personally prioritize a water process, since it’s free of any extra chemicals.
Above all, the perfect thing you can do when shopping for coffee, according to Welsh, is taste it—decaf coffee shouldn’t taste any less delicious than a full-caffeine variety. This is a lot easier to do when buying your beans direct from a local coffee shop, where they might be brewing the beans to order each day.
Whether or not you can sample it, using these strategic tips can help you find a bag worthy of your own coffee ritual. Then the only question that remains is: how will you brew your beautiful beans? (If you’re asking me, it’s all about the cold brew).
This article firstly appeared on this page.