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Why Does Coffee Taste Like Chocolate?

Are you wondering why your coffee tastes like chocolate?

Perhaps the coffee beans you’re using seem the same, but your coffee taste is different?

Like many coffee drinkers, you would once in a while experience this distinct coffee taste.

You may begin asking yourself if there is anything wrong with how you brew your coffee.

Sometimes you may even suspect that there might be something flagrantly wrong with your coffee machine.

You can chalk up the chocolate taste of your coffee beans to where the beans were grown – beans grow in low altitude locations (like South America) often have those chocolate flavor notes.

Keep reading and we’ll tell you more.

Do Coffee and Chocolate taste the same?

Coffee and chocolate can sometimes taste similar due to growing regions.

They both have a similar profile. Chocolate comes from cacao, boasting over 600 aromatic compounds, while coffee has more than 1000 in coffee.

While cacao tends to grow along or near the Equator in West Africa, Latin America, Asia, or India, coffee flourishes in Ethiopia, Yemen, and South America.

Another fact worth knowing about cacao beans is that they come in various types.

There are currently more than ten types of cacao.

As you can see, coffee and cacao beans come from different plants, although both coffee and cacao can stimulate your feelings.

There are similarities in fermentation, drying, and roasting of each.

Coffee has caffeine, whereas chocolate has theobromine.

What makes your coffee taste like chocolate?

Several reasons make your coffee taste like chocolate.

Some are within your control; others are not.

For instance, when you buy your coffee beans, you need to pay attention to the location where they were grown.

You can decide where to buy your coffee beans and the kind of coffee beans you buy.

But you have no control over how those coffee beans were grown.

Usually, coffee beans grown in lower altitude regions like the central and South American Guatemala, Colombia, and Brazil are likely to have this chocolate flavor.

Why? Because they have a dark roast level that caramelizes the sugar during roasting.

However, other coffees taste like chocolate because they were made to taste that way.

This is due to the roasters adding cocoa to flavor the coffee.

The roast level makes your coffee taste like chocolate. 

Coffee roasting plays a significant role in how coffee tastes.

Put differently, the longer you keep coffee beans in a roaster, the better the taste. 

If your coffee tastes like chocolate, it may be tasting that way because roasting was not done right.

First, there might be too light of a roast, which doesn’t allow your coffee to caramelize nicely.

Or, the roast levels were not what they were supposed to be. 

Remember, not all coffee beans are roasted the same, and different regions use different farming and processing methods.

About Coffee Flavor Profiles

Personally, I’m a big fan of the chocolate and cacao flavor notes in certain coffee beans, but that’s not the only flavor notes coffee has to offer.

Depending on how it is roasted and where it is grown, coffee beans can taste like:

  • tobacco
  • floral
  • fruits
  • nuts
  • spices
  • and more!
coffee taste flavor wheel

Closing Thoughts 

The taste of your coffee says more about how it was grown than what kind of coffee machine you use.

Most coffee beans are grown like cocoa beans; hence they are roasted, ground, and brewed like coffee.

If it tastes like chocolate it is because of one of the reasons: either its coffee beans are from low altitudes areas or have an organic cocoa flavor in them.

Chocolate taste in your coffee usually has more to do with the grown location.

For instance, if your coffee is a Colombian light roast, it will have that chocolaty taste influenced by the Colombian region. 

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