If you love coffee, you know that not all coffee is created equal. Farming practices, processing methods, roast development, coffee varietals, etc. all play their part!

Here, we’re highlighting another important factor—coffee freshness.

Read on to learn the top 3 signs that your coffee is fresh, and check out our guide to coffee freshness for more of the science behind the bean.

Top 3 Ways To Know If Your Coffee Is Fresh & Flavorful


Some companies and coffee roasters put the roast date on their bags, and you might see roast dates of anywhere from two weeks ago to months and months ago sitting on the shelves. Other coffee brands let their coffee collect dust on grocery store shelves for months and don’t mention anything about freshness or when the coffee was roasted.

For maximum freshness and flavor, shop for coffee that was roasted within the last week or so, as high quality coffee reaches peak freshness at 7-10 days post-roasting.

At Atlas Coffee Club, you may notice that we don’t put the roast date on the bag, but it’s not because we don’t think freshness is important. We do this because we roast your coffee to order to ensure optimal freshness, always.



The easiest way to tell if your coffee is fresh, no matter the brand, is to look for what’s called the bloom—the foamy bubbles that form on top of the grounds as you brew, usually with a pour-over / Chemex brew method. You may also see some foam or bubbles in your French Press as you pour the first bit of water into the carafe.

A pale, foamy bloom is a sure sign of fresh coffee!

Coffee beans are made of organic material, so when they’re heated during the roasting process, they begin to release carbon dioxide (CO2). The beans continue to release natural gases for about 14 days – this is called ‘degassing’. Grinding the beans and heating the grounds with hot water causes them to degas faster.

The bubbly bloom you see when you add hot water to freshly roasted, freshly ground beans comes from the released CO2 interacting with the water. Briefly blooming your coffee with a bit of hot water before you brew allows the coffee grounds to release all of their CO2, so that the rest of the hot water interacts with the coffee itself and extracts all the delicious flavors of the coffee!



We sometimes hear from folks that they don’t think their coffee’s fresh because their beans are dry, and not oily.

To clarify, dry or oily beans actually have nothing to do with coffee freshness. The dryness / oiliness of the beans is just a function of how darkly the beans were roasted—not how long ago they were roasted. So oily beans can be stale, and dry beans can be fresh.

It’s just a matter of finding the roast type you prefer, and being sure you get beans roasted to your preference on your schedule, so you’re always brewing freshly roasted, flavorful
coffee 🙂