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Acidity: Coffee A-Z

Acidity, noun

1: The quality, state, or degree of acid
2: The state of being excessively acid

Tall Mountain Oats coffees are often medium to mild in their acidity level, with exceptions. Acidity is essential to a top-rated coffee. On a bag of Tall Mountain Oats coffee, you will see an acidity level listed, typically stated as mild, medium, or bright. However, there are far more terms associated with the acidity of a beverage. Here are some examples:

– Mellow – Balanced – Crisp – Tart – Complex – Intense – Wine-like –
– Flat - Sharp – Drying – Astringent – Sour – Cloying – Aggressive –

When a desirable level of acidity is present in a cup of coffee, it is often described as tasting fresh. Acid levels aid in the overall characteristics of the cup of coffee and can be traceable upon your first taste. Ultimately, the acidity level of a coffee is subject to a wide range of preferences.

Acidity can be manipulated in the roasting process, as well as the brewing process. If you find a coffee to be too acidic to your liking when brewed hot, try making a cold brew out of it instead and see if you can tell a difference!

Though there are always exceptions to the rule, typically Kenyan coffees are crisply acidic, while Sumatran coffees result in balanced and complex acidity levels, likely due to the high altitudes in the region. When enjoying a balanced cup of coffee, you will notice its mouthfeel and structure. From a scientific approach, there are a variety of different types of acids that can be found in coffees, although the pH level of a cup of coffee typically remains around a reading of 5.

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Works Cited

(2023, 9 14). Retrieved from Specialty Coffee Association:

Colonna-Dashwood, M. (2017). The Coffee Dictionary; An A-Z of coffee, from growing & roasting to brewing & tasting. San Francisco: Chronicle Books.

Dictionary. (2023, 9 14). Retrieved from Merriam-Webster:

Moldvaer, A. (2014). Coffee Obsession; Flavorful Beans, Barista Techniques; More than 1000 Global Recipes. London: Dorling Kindersley Limited.



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