Light, Medium, Dark – The Differences Between Coffee Roasts Explained

Most coffee drinkers know that different roasts have different tastes but many folks may not know what makes one roast different from the next.  So, without further adieu, here’s a quick and simple explanation of light, medium and dark coffee roast coffees.

coffee roasts

Light Roast

Lighter roasts contain the most caffeine out of the three.  Additionally, they are also the most versatile in flavor, given that the darker the roast the more charred the beans become, and the more universal the almost burnt flavor seems to become from one dark roast to the next. Due to minimal charring, the true flavors of the beans are able to come out and express themselves freely in lighter roasts, as they aren’t masked away by a much stronger, charcoal-y taste

Medium Roast

Medium roasts are darker (obviously) than light roasts. They have a bit less caffeine, are far more acidic, but don’t have the charcoal taste characteristic of darker roasts. Medium roasts are often times seemingly more balanced coffees, with lots of possibility for flavor.

Dark Roast

Dark roasts are the typical coffee that everyone generally thinks of – bold, robust, rich and bursting with flavor. Dark roast coffees have the least caffeine out of the three, and have a chocolate-like darkness that gives them that strong, charred, charcoal-y taste, which many coffee drinkers know and love.