Two out of three American’s drink coffee daily. But there are still a lot of people that have never drank coffee. So, that still leaves millions of people that are wondering, “What does coffee taste like”. I think the real question here is, “What does good coffee taste like”, or “How to make coffee taste good“.

Bitter & Burnt Industrial Coffee

how to make coffee taste good

Unfortunately, nearly 100% of the coffee roasters in America believe that coffee is supposed to taste bitter and burnt, so they intentionally burn the snot out of their coffee beans and then allow the roasted coffee to sit in warehouses or on store shelves for months if not years. Thus their coffee is bitter and burnt, just like they intended.

That’s why most Americans have only experienced bitter and burnt industrial coffee. To them, that’s what coffee is supposed to taste like.

They couldn’t be more wrong.

Grandma’s Coffee

best light roast coffee

In my humble opinion, God never intended coffee to taste bitter and burnt, and neither did your Grandma. In the “Old Days”, prior to WWI (for those government educated Millenials, that would be “World War One”), very few people purchased roasted coffee. Nearly everyone purchased raw green coffee.

Why green coffee? First of all, green coffee, if kept dry, will last for years. Secondly, the day that you roast that coffee, it starts going stale and thus bitter. And within 30 days, it’s so bitter and nasty that it doesn’t remotely resemble fresh roasted coffee beans. Therefore, nearly everyone prior to WWI, roasted their own coffee beans every week.

Now here’s a truth that you can take to the bank. The fresher the roasted coffee bean, the better the cup of coffee. Your Grandma’s coffee was naturally sweet, smooth as silk, and her guests could taste subtle flavors of chocolate, or nut, or citrus, etc. There wasn’t a hint of bitter or burnt flavor to her coffee.  In other words, your Grandma’s coffee was an order of magnitude better than anything that you’re likely to find in any store or any coffee shop.

Doughboy Coffee

Doughboy Coffee

You might be asking, “Why on Earth would industrial coffee companies intentionally make bad coffee?’’ Good question.

During WWI, the U.S. Army wanted to send coffee along with the Doughboys to Europe (for those government educated Millenials, a Doughboy was a WWI American Infantryman).  To preserve the coffee with a very long shelf-life, the war department, burned the snot out of the coffee beans and then vacuum sealed the beans in tin cans. The coffee tasted like hell, but to the Doughboys, it was still heaven in a cup.

The problem was, when the Doughboys came home, they didn’t want coffee like Grandma used to make, they wanted more burnt and bitter coffee, like they had in the Army. That’s when industrial coffee companies like Maxwell House, Hills Brothers, Yuban, and Charbucks picked up on this trend and started burning the snot out of their beans and sealing them in tin cans. And to this day, that’s what American’s expect and what industrial coffee roasters deliver; coffee that’s bitter and burnt.

What Does Coffee Taste Like

What does good coffee taste like

If Grandma’s coffee was so good, then how do you get some? Well, you can do what Grandma did and buy some green coffee beans and roast it yourself. Let me tell you, it’s a pain in the ass, but that’s what I did. Unfortunately, it took me about a year of experimenting before I could roast coffee as good as your Grandma. Frankly, it’s a bit of an art.


Eventually, I ended up with coffee that was naturally sweet, smooth as silk (no bitter and burnt flavor), and I could taste subtle flavors of chocolate, or nut, or citrus, depending on the beans that I purchased.

Lake City Coffee

Fresh Costa Rican
Russell & Alisha In Costa Rica

If you want to give roasting a try, I suggest checking out Sweet Maria’s. They have a ton of information, equipment, and green beans. Sweet Maria’s is where I started.

If you’re lazy and just want an expert to send you some super fresh roasted coffee beans, then that’s where we come in. Alisha, my wonderful wife, and I started Lake City Coffee about 5 years ago. Our vision was to create coffee as good as your Grandma and get it to you within 48 hours.

To be perfectly honest, we roast the best coffee that you’re likely to find anywhere. Now I wouldn’t make that bodacious statement unless I could back it up. So all you have to do is go to our “Review” tab and read our customer comments. You’ll find people, much like you; from NYC to LA, from Miami to Seattle and many many places in between.

Smoothest Coffee Beans In The World

Smoothest Coffee In The World

Yep, there’s another audacious statement. Here’s the thing. I hate bitter coffee. So, we do a lot of taste testing of beans from around the world, in search of coffee that’s super smooth.

Year after year, we ended up picking the same coffee beans from the Tarrazu Region of Costa Rica.

Today, we don’t even bother to taste test beans from anywhere else. Even the overly touted Kona Hawaiian or Jamaican Blue Mountain beans can’t compare in smoothness or flavor to our beans.

That’s why we have only 1 bean (Tarrazu Region of Costa Rica) and 4 roasts.

  • White Lightning
  • Majestic Medium
  • Delectable Dark (barely dark)
  • Swiss Water Processed Decaf

How To Make Coffee Taste Good

what does coffee taste like

Having the best beans with the freshest perfect roast is only half of the “perfect cup of coffee” equation. The other half is in the brewing.

There are 3 major ways of brewing coffee.

  • Drip: Drip Machine, Slow Pour Over, Percolator, etc.
  • Pressure: Espresso, Moka Pot, etc.
  • Steeping: Cold-Brew, French Press, AeroPress

If you’re looking for coffee that tastes smooth as silk and that includes the subtle flavors that God put into those beans, then forget Drip or Pressure. On the other hand steeping, allowing the coffee grounds to soak in the water, produces the smoothest and best tasting coffee.

Cold-Brew produces, by far, the smoothest coffee, but the taste is a little lacking. French Press on the other hand is brutally honest; producing a strong cup of coffee, where everything is magnified; the good, bad, and the ugly. Lastly, the AeroPress is somewhere between Cold-Brew and the French Press. Its coffee is both smooth and strong. Additionally, the AeroPress costs only $29.  For more information on brewing check out my article How To Make The Smoothest Cup of Coffee.

Do Yourself A Favor

If you’re looking for super smooth coffee that tastes great, then do yourself a favor and check us out. Over 90% of our sales come from repeat customers, so there’s a good chance that you’re going to love our coffee too.

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fresh whole bean coffee

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