A Guide to Our Flavour Profiles

Ever wondered what the coloured labels on our bags are for? Turns out, they're not just there to look pretty. Each colour has been carefully chosen to represent one of seven different flavour profiles - spicy, sweet, floral, fruity, citrus, cocoa, and nutty - to make it easier for you to spot the flavours you love. 

What does each colour and flavour mean? Our very own Green Coffee Buyer, Roland Glew, is here to help:

Cocoa (Peach)

All things chocolate can be a classic coffee flavour across the world, but there's still a world of difference between the dark chocolate of a Natural processed Brazil and the creamy milk chocolate which El Salvador is well known for. Usually these coffees have a medium or full body which complements the cocoa sweetness.

Citrus (Yellow)

From the tart lemon to the soft and sweet orange creme, from aromatic lime leaf to biting grapefruit zest, these coffees are often crisp and bright. Often these coffees are made using the Washed process, with Africa producing more than its share. Floral or sweet notes often play second fiddle to Citrus in these coffees.

Fruity (Purple)

A big category, this encompasses the funky, bruised fruit flavour of Natural processed coffees right through to the world famous blackcurrant burst of Washed Kenyans. There's lots of variation here but you'll rarely find them boring.

Sweet (Red)

Great coffee is always sweet, but here it's the star of the show. This category doesn't include fruity or chocolate-like sweetness, so what's left? Simple, intense white sugar, or the delicate complexity of honey. The complex brown sugars, or through to sticky caramels and toffee. Country and process both play a part in these flavours, with Costa Rican Honey processed coffees often fitting here as well as the signature Sugar Cane Decafs of Colombia.

Floral (Teal)

The benchmark for floral is the Washed coffees of Ethiopia (especially Yirgacheffe), where it's a recognised classic. In other countries, it's harder to find and often associated with more obscure and difficult to grow varietals of coffee such as Geisha, Java or Yellow Pacamara. Most common in Washed or Honey process coffees, its delicacy can be lost against a heavy body or the funk of Natural processing.

Nutty (Grey)

Nowhere delivers nutty coffees like Brazil. Roasted Hazelnut is most common, but expect Walnut, Almond and Brazil nut as well, with cocoa flavours likely to be back them up. Less commonly, look out for Central American coffees with Washed or Pulped Natural processing occasionally delivering interesting nutty notes like Macadamia or Pecan.

Spicy (Orange)

Rare but unique, this is usually created by one of two things. Anaerobic or other experimental coffee processing can deliver a hit of cinnamon, nutmeg or other sweet spices - this is classic to the coffees of Yemen and their unique traditional drying. In contrast, modern Catimor varietals such as H1 sometimes deliver a peppery hit on the finish which is all their own.
Ready to put your new knowledge to the test? Browse all our coffees and see if you can find your flavour, or try out our coffee picker