Acidity: A measure of the acid content of the liquid;
in fine coffees acidity results in a pleasant sharpness. Not to
be associated with the genuinely sour taste of inferior coffees.
Aftertaste: The sensation of brewed coffee vapors released
after swallowing. Characteristics will range from carbony to chocolaty,
spicy to turpeny
Aroma: The sensation of the gases released from brewed
coffee; may be described as ranging from fruity to herby.
Bitter: Perceived by the back of the tongue and characterized
by solutions of quinine, caffeine, and other alkaloids; usually
caused by over-roasting.
Bland: Perceived by the sides of the tongue and ranging
in taste from "soft" to neutral. Found often in washed
Body: Associated with mouth feel and texture, this should
be a strong, full, pleasant characteristic.
Bouquet: The total aromatic profile, resulting from
compounds in the fragrance, aroma and aftertaste.
Caramelly: A common aromatic sensation; reminiscent
of candy or syrup.
Carbony: A common aromatic sensation in dark-roasted
coffees, reminiscent of a burnt substance.
Chocolaty: A common aromatic sensation in a brew's aftertaste,
reminiscent of unsweetened chocolate or vanilla.
Delicate: Related to mellow; characterized by a fragile,
subtle flavor; perceived by the tip of the tongue.
Dirty: An unclean smell or taste that can be specific,
such as sourness or mustiness, or a more generalized taint that
reminds one of eating dirt.
Flat: Used when describing bouquet to denote a lack
of strong perceptions in fragrance, aroma, and after-taste.
Flavor: The experience of aromatics once the coffee
is in the mouth.
Fragrance: The aromatic sensations inhaled by sniffing;
Can be described as ranging from sweetly floral to sweetly spicy.
Fruity: The aromatic sensation reminiscent of citrus
fruit or berries.
Grassy: Used to describe an odor and/or taste in some
coffees that is reminiscent of a freshly mown lawn, with an accompanying
astringency like that of green grass.
Harsh: A hard, raspy, often caustic flavor sometimes
described as "rioy".
Mellow: A rounded, smooth taste, characteristically
lacking in acidity.
Mild: Refers to a coffee that lacks any overriding characteristic,
either pleasant or unpleasant.
Mouth feel: The tactile sensations the coffee produces
on your palate.
Muddy: A dull, indistinct, and thickish flavor that
can be caused by the grounds being agitated.
Musty: A flavor that often occurs due to poor storage
or lack of sufficient drying, aging, or overheating. In aged coffee
mustiness is not necessarily undesirable.
Nutty: An aromatic sensation that is released as a brew
is swallowed; reminiscent of roasted nuts.
Neutral: A flavor characteristic that is desirable in
good blenders. Used to denote a lack of any strong flavors.
Rich: Used when describing bouquet to denote intense
perceptions of fragrance, aroma, and aftertaste.
Rioy: A somewhat grainy or starchy taste, like potato
soup in texture.
Rough: Characterized by a parched sensation on the tongue,
related to sharp, salty taste sensations.
Rubbery: Caused when fruit is allowed to partially dry
while still on the tree, this is a fault that gives beans the
character of burnt rubber. It is found mostly in dry-processed
robustas, not Arabicas.
Soft: The absence of the parched sensation on the tongue;
related to bland.
Sour: Related to over-acidity; a sharp, biting flavor,
often from under ripe beans.
Spicy: An aromatic and taste perception reminiscent
Sweet: Free of any harshness.
Taint: A chemical change in the bean brought about by
any number of internal or external changes, which results in a
change in the coffee's flavor.
Thin: Related to under brewing, resulting in a coffee
lacking in any acidity.
Watery: Caused by the wrong water-to-coffee ratio, which
results in the low level of oils in the coffee.
Wild: A gamey flavor often associated with Ethiopian
Winey: Reminiscent of a well-matured red wine; characterized
by a full-bodied, smooth coffee. Often found in Kenyan and Yemeni