Shopping on the web might seem like an activity better suited to buying sweaters than coffee beans. There are some amazing websites where you can buy gourmet coffee online, but finding those amazing sites can be tricky. The obvious choice when deciding where to buy coffee beans online is to go with a big brand name that you already know.
But how do you find the indie roasters, the best of the best for a particular region, or the quirky companies off of the beaten path?
We have a few tips and tricks to help you navigate your way through the nearly three million results you get when you search “buy coffee beans online”—our guide to improving the signal to noise ratio by honing in on your specific targets.
City by City
One way to decide where to buy coffee beans online is to take a geographic approach. Select a city, search for their local coffee roasters, and see if their websites have the option to order online. Think of this as a virtual vacation via coffee—try finding roasters in your hometown or in a dream destination. Roasting and blending is often a point of local pride for a region, so look for those rave reviews and explore!
Take a Stance
Are you looking for gourmet coffee beans that are fair trade? Organic? Bird-friendly? Include these terms in your search, or start with the certification agency for information about coffee that meets their standards. Once you have decided on a source, research their website. Most websites will prominently feature any products with certifications, and provide information on the history of the company and their values. Don’t hesitate to contact them directly if you have questions about their practices, their sourcing or their relationship with their growers.
Beans and Beer?
As it turns out, homebrewers (people who make their own beer at home) have a fiercely experimental and independent approach to homesteading in general. Homebrewing supply websites can be a great source for green coffee beans and coffee roasting equipment.
Ask an Expert
Do you have a coffee fanatic friend—someone who pulls out the SCAA cupping protocols before tasting? If so, you have a consultant at hand.
If not, well then—you have us! Here is a roundup of some of our favorite places to buy coffee beans online:
- Counter Culture Coffee: Single origin, blends, microlots, subscriptions and more!
- Intelligentsia Coffee: Direct trade and in season coffee.
- Verve Coffee: One of those local finds, out of Santa Cruz, California.
- Old Town Roasting: They roast fresh when you order, and 20% of their profits go to supporting their local soup kitchen and to microloans through Kiva.
- Sightglass Coffee: An indie company focused on transparency and traceability.
- Stumptown Coffee Roasters: Look for their Grand Cru selection—their top-shelf label for “distinguishing truly exquisite coffees.”
- Seven Bridges Cooperative: A homebrewing supply source that features fair trade, organic green coffee and coffee roasting equipment.
Have recommendations for your favorite places to buy coffee beans online? Share them with us in the comments below!
Main Photo: Stirling Noyes Photography & Design
Content Photo: madlyinlovewithlife