[Must Read] Where To Buy Espresso Beans

[Must Read] Where To Buy Espresso Beans

Last updated on October 24th, 2023 at 21:47

This article is dedicated to the topic of espresso beans and where to buy espresso beans. By the time you have read this article, you will know exactly what constitutes a good espresso bean without any coffee snobbery.

We talk about the roast and why it is important, the type of beans, origin and blends and help you to get the best beans that you can and, of course, where you can buy them.

Keep reading as we dig down and detail the subject of espresso beans and where to buy them.

Starting with…

What Is Espresso?

An espresso shot is a highly focused and concentrated coffee that has thick, rich crema on top. The body is notably heavier than other coffee drinks. It is made with fresh dark roasted espresso beans with hot water being forced past a compact puck of very finely ground coffee beans.

The use of fresh dark oily beans is essential, as is the 9 bars (130 PSI) of pressure to achieve a high quality crema. Without either, you get a reduction in the quality of the crema. Medium and medium-dark roasts can get you more of the flavors from the beans or blend of beans, but it is trading the quality of the cream for taste.

Learning to pull a perfect shot, and having all the right ingredients is important as 2 out of 3 coffee drinks made are a shot of espresso.

What Is Espresso
A well-Made Shot Of Espresso

Read: Best espresso beans for Breville

Where To Buy Espresso Beans

Espresso beans are not hard to find at all. You can find them everywhere, literally, everywhere. Even in your own hometown or city.

While some will argue about the benefits of buying in person at a local shop Vs and online.

The only valid and legitimate benefit is having them in your hand, well instantly!

Freshness is often argued as a factor as coffee enthusiasts and coffee lovers argue that buying espresso beans locally are fresher.

This is not necessarily true, and having worked in supply chain management for the best part of 10 years with the world’s leading company, the time taken to get the product to the retailer is something that adds a 24 to 48-hour delay, even as long as 72 hours depending on the locations involved and time to get through customs.

Then there is the question of how long they have been on the shelf. Always check the roasted on date.

Where To Buy Espresso Beans
Check The Roasted On Date!

Read: Best roast for espresso

Buying online, cuts out the middleman.

Often, when buying online, you are buying from a 3rd party site that is effectively drop-shipping, even when buying with leading outlets like Amazon.

Often, these brands are buying direct from roasters and have the order sent directly to you. They may even be roasting themselves.

Imagine this,

you order your espresso beans online via Amazon on the coffee brands website. The order comes in and gets sent to the roaster. They roast your beans and pack them with the company bag, brand and logo and 1 to 3 days later, you get your beans.

Since it takes coffee beans 48 to 72 hours after roasting to reach peak freshness, you will get delivered to your home coffee beans that are perfectly fresh and at peak freshness.

I find that buying direct from the roaster or brand on Amazon or their own website is better as I can see how well their products are selling and how well they are rated, and I can read through reviews.


Where To Buy The Best Espresso Beans
Coffee roasters often dropship for clients

Amazon, via their FBA program, has almost 1,200 warehouses and distribution centers in the US, 40 within the EU 6 in Australia and many in the UK with 6 in London alone, All their centers are located near the larger cities. In all probability, you will get your beans in 24 hours.

It is only a matter of stock management by the brand, to ensure their beans get to you as fresh as possible. Even if you order directly from their website, it is highly probable they are using Amazon warehouses and distribution as a matter of convenience.

As the former owner of an Amazon FBA – Fulfilled By Amazon business, I can absolutely confirm that their program can integrate directly with eBay and an independent website and manage sales and distribution as well as taking orders on the Amazon website.

Your options for buying espresso beans and coffee beans are not limited to buying locally, from the brands website directly or Amazon. You can also buy from:

  • Target.
  • Walmart.
  • eBay.
  • Safeway.

Or any other online retailer or physical store. Some Brands you can by direct from include:

  • Counter Culture Coffee.
  • Starbucks
  • Tandem Coffee
  • Thread Coffee Roasters
  • Peet’s
  • Devoción.
  • Dog Wood Coffee Co.
  • Onyx Coffee Lab.
  • Verve Coffee Roaster.
  • Volcanica.
  • Kicking Horse.
  • Heart Roasters.
  • Bandit Coffee Co.
  • Coffee Bean Direct.
  • Rook Coffee Roasters.
  • Praxis Coffee Roasters
  •  Koffee Kult.

You can also have automatic orders set up from various subscription boxes like:

  • Atlas Coffee Club.
  • Trade Coffee.
  • Misto Box.
  • Craft Coffee.
  • Intelligentsia.
  • Yes Plz.
  • Blue Bottle.

Things To Things About When Buying Espresso Beans

Not all coffee beans are the same and espresso beans are a specific roast aimed for using in a specific type of coffee drink.

Regular coffee beans and espresso beans are not the same. An espresso has to be made using darker coffee beans, one that has been roasted to an Italian roast or one of the 3 other dark roast profiles.

It’s a hard and fast rule but not one that is set in stone. You can make an espresso with medium-dark, medium roasts and even light roasts.

Lighter roasts are more difficult to get right as you need to make a number of adjustments, including the dose, temperature, brew time etc.

Essentially, the lighter your roast, the less crema you will get due to the reduction in oil on the exterior of your beans.

One thing that is very important is that you use fresh coffee beans. Some espresso lovers will prefer medium to medium dark roasts due to having a little more taste of the origins from the origin of the beans be it single origin or a blend.

Best Roast For Espresso

There is no one particular best roast for espresso. There are many different espresso drinks and each has a different roast that works best for them.

Also, “best” is very subjective and opinionated. Some coffee lovers enjoy a good medium roast in their latte and get the flavors from the beans coming through the milk.

This is difficult to achieve due to the milkiness of a latte. Others prefer to have a good traditional coffee flavor coming past the milk, which can only happen with a dark roast.

Dark roasts cut through the milk much easier and more profoundly than medium roasts.

For a good quality traditional espresso shot, only a dark roast will do as it will get you a high quality thick creama on top.

Coffee enthusiasts have a strong preference for medium-dark roasts or dark roasts for espresso brewing. You will get a full body with low acidity and a good quantity and quality of the natural oils to create a good crema on top.

Medium roasts, as stated, will give you more of the flavor notes and tones from the beans with a medium acidity.

A light roast requires a lot more skill as a barista to make, but absolutely you can learn to produce a shot with earthy and more floral flavors. This is really not one to use for a latte as you will have too many difficulties in getting past the milk. As a shot of espresso, most certainly it can be done.

Best Roast For Espresso
Medium-Dark Or Dark Roasts Make Great Espresso

Arabica Bean Or Robusta Bean?

You have undoubtedly heard of the two types of coffee beans, Arabica and Robusta. These have an effect on your coffee experience.

By far, the most popular of the two are Arabica beans. They have a much stronger and better flavor profile, which is usually a sweet taste. Robusta beans are stronger and have a lower acidity. They are stronger in caffeine with 2.2x more caffeine than Arabica beans.

Often, an espresso blend has a mix of Arabica and Robusta beans with up to 20% being robusta beans. These are added to increase the caffeine content.

Which of the two you prefer will be your own personal taste.

Arabica Bean Or Robusta Bean
There Are Two Main Beans, Arabica And Robusta

Espresso Coffee Beans Origin And Flavor

The origin of the coffee bean affects the flavor a lot. This is why one coffee can taste dramatically different from another. Factors like the soil quality and chemistry, the rainfall, altitude as well as how they are processed – for example, in Colombia, coffee beans are wash processed.

There are not too many countries that produce coffee; there are only 50 or so countries that have the right climate to grow coffee.

Here are some of them and what you can expect.

Brazilian Beans: These vary a lot more than other coffees due to large changes in altitude. They are nutty, spiced and have a heavy body. Beans from Bahia have a chocolate-Peanut butter like taste.

Colombian Beans: Very caramel like and with touches of nuttiness. Expect a very mild and a very tasty coffee.

Indonesian Beans: Indonesia is such a diverse country and their coffee is no different. You will find these beans identified by their island such as Sumatran (Sumatra Island) or Java (java Island). Often volcanic, but not always. You will find aged coffees that have a much deeper body.

Ethiopian Beans: This is my personal favorite. and vary a lot in flavor depending on the region. Expect floral light tones and heady wine-like flavors also.

Hawaiian Bean: Also known as Kona. These are volcanic and grown in conditions of heavy rainfall and an abundance of sunshine. They are sweet and floral.

Kenyan Beans: These grow in conditions of greater sunlight exposure than other coffee varieties. They have a savory but tart sweetness to them.

Espresso blends often have a mix of Indonesian beans, Colombian beans or Brazilian beans. It is possible to find a blend with all 3.

Espresso Coffee Bean Origin
Different Origins Produce A Very Different Coffee

How Do I Choose a Good Espresso Blend?

This is the best and most enjoyable part of coffee – choosing an espresso blend or blend of any coffee beans.

You know what tastes to expect from the origins mentioned above. Try to imagine how a coffee that is a blend of two or three of those beans and the flavor combinations.

Simply look at the Espresso blend that you have your eyes on and find out where each bean comes from and search for what their flavor profiles are.

Some coffee enthusiasts prefer a single origin, others a blend. It is a personal choice. You can enjoy all the fabulous notes and flavors from the origin, which is great. You can also enjoy a beautiful blend that is well married and roasted to perfection and get all the unique tastes from 2 or 3 different locations, which is great also.

What Country Makes the Best Espresso Beans?

Which country makes the best espresso is subjective as each has its own aroma, flavor notes and subtleties.

For some coffee lovers they enjoy the chocolaty taste and nuttiness of Brazilian beans. For others, they enjoy the lighter taste of Colombian beans.

For me, I enjoy Costa Rican espresso beans and consider those to be the best espresso beans.

Experiment and fine which you have a preference for. Find your own best.

What Are The Smoothest Espresso Coffee Beans?

Smoothness in coffee is referred to the balance of flavor. Not too sweet, not too bitter, not too tart. A very rounded coffee flavor, tasty and a touch of chocolate.

The smoothest espresso beans by far I found to be Colombian espresso beans.

The smoothest Espresso Beans
The Smoothest Espresso Beans Are From Colombia

Frequently Asked Questions About Where To Buy Espresso Beans

Are Whole Coffee Beans The Same As Espresso Beans?

Regular coffee beans are different from espresso beans as usually they have been roasted to a different roast profile. They are different in this aspect. Espresso beans start out the same as all other coffee beans, as green beans. The only difference is their roast level.

Do You Need Special Coffee Beans For Espresso?

To make a great espresso, you need at least medium-dark roast coffee beans. To make a perfect espresso, you are better to brew it with a dark roast, an espresso roast as they have slightly more oil and will produce a heavier espresso with a heavier body and thicker rich crema on top. Your beans must be fresh.

What Kind Of Beans Do You Use For Espresso?

A top quality shot of espresso is usually made with Arabica beans or an espresso blends with a mix of Robusta and Arabica beans and roasted to an espresso roast, which is also known as an Italian roast. They must also be fresh as you need the oils to produce the rich crema on top.

Can You Buy Espresso Beans Already Ground?


you can buy pre-ground coffee of all types, including espresso beans. It is your choice if you want to buy pre-ground or whole bean espresso beans. At Latte Love Brew, we encourage you to use whole beans and grind them immediately before you brew your coffee as you will get much fresher coffee and a cup of coffee that tastes slightly better.

Pre-ground and whole bean coffee cost approximately the same.

What Beans Does Starbucks Use For Espresso?

Starbucks don’t reveal what is in their espresso blend as it is a company trade secret. What I do know is that it is a 100% Arabica blend sourced from a mix of Latin American and African beans. I’d love to tell you but, literally, nobody knows outside their master roaster.

If you find out, be sure to tell me!

What Kind Of Beans To Use for Espresso?

For the most flavorful shot of espresso, it is best that you use Arabica beans that are freshly roasted, and of a dark roast. For me, intense Italian roast is best. It is freshly roasted dark roasts that will help to produce that thick rich crema on top.

Can I Use Supermarket Coffee Beans For Espresso?

Yes, supermarket coffee beans can be used in your espresso machine as long as they are of a fine grind size. The fresher your beans are, the better they will taste.

You might have some difficulties in finding a fine grind size at your local supermarket.

Can You Buy Pre Ground Espresso Beans?

Yes, pre-ground coffee is perfectly okay to be used in your espresso machine. However, you will get a much better coffee when you grind your own beans immediately before you brew them.

 Frappé-Ing It All Up – Where To Buy Espresso Beans

If you have read this far, you know exactly where to buy espresso beans and, most importantly, how to buy them and what to look for in a good espresso bean, including the type of bean, the roast, origin and blend.

It is your choice to buy online or offline. There is no real advantage to buying in person and no disadvantage to buying online. I prefer to buy online as I have much more choice than what my local coffee shop has to offer.

Join our cool coffee community and tell us about the amazing espresso beans you are trying right now! Find us on Facebook/Meta.

Derek Marshall, a certified barista by the Specialty Coffee Association possesses over two decades of experience in specialty coffee shops. He holds professional certifications for coffee brewing and barista skills. Derek is also an author with authoritative books covering various coffee topics including specialty coffee, sustainability and coffee, coffee brewing, coffee recipes, coffee cocktails and books focusing on Brazilian coffee, Vietnamese coffee, Indonesian coffee and Malaysian coffee. As a barista for over two decades, Derek Marshall has worked in specialty coffee shops across the United Kingdom, Spain, Thailand, Malaysia, Cambodia, Indonesia, and Vietnam. His expertise extends to the distinct coffee cultures, specialty beverages, and brewing techniques of each nation. Functioning as a coffee consultant, Derek charges US$50 per hour. To learn more about Derek Marshall and Latte Love Brew, visit his About Me Page. For coffee inquiries, contact him at +34-639-410-375 or Derek@LatteLoveBrew.com, mentioning your name and location

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