Why rest your espresso? Coffee in general is very volatile in the first few hours after roasting. Soon after a coffee comes out of the roaster it starts a process called de-gassing or off-gassing. This is mainly carbon dioxide (and some other delightfully long named science-y things) leaving the cell structure of the coffee bean and is the culprit for that amazing smell when you open a bag. When a coffee is roasted it will continually off-gas until it has completely staled but it’s important to wait at least 8-12 hours after roasting. A significant amount of gas is leaving the bean at this time and if you try to brew before allowing this time to pass you will get a really bubbly brew of coffee as well as a seemingly underdeveloped acidity in the cup. Sometimes this can lead to some vegetal notes as well and just overall makes for a really unbalanced. One-dimensional cup. To see just how much gas comes off fresh roasted coffee just put some in a sealed plastic bag for a day and all will be revealed.
Here at DRC we’ve found that resting brewed coffee for at least one day, or at least overnight, after roasting allows the volatile aromatic compounds to balance out and for the cup to be exactly what the roaster was intending. Since espresso is ground significantly finer and brewed under pressure this waiting period needs to be 4-7 days on average. We’ve had coffees here at DRC taste best as espresso after 10+ days but they are less common. As roasters and fanatics about quality we want to facilitate people at home and shops around the region brewing better espresso. So we’ve recently implemented a built in waiting time to most orders going out the door. Our wholesale shops may now notice a delivery of espresso that was roasted up to 4 days prior. This is beneficial because even if they have a built in waiting period in their shop to brew espresso several days after roast, they’re still brewing fresh espresso in the ideal resting time. If you brew espresso at home and purchase from your local shop, ask for espresso that is rested and enjoy a more balanced, nuanced espresso at home.