Sweetness is a mild, smooth coffee flavor characteristic/taste sensation (a basic taste descriptor) without any harsh tastes (e.g., Rio flavor) or flavor defects/off-flavors. This sweet quality is often perceived as a palatable and/or fruity taste that is sensed primarily at the tip of the tongue.
Sweetness – The Intensity of the Coffee’s Sugary Qualities
The term sweet is used by cuppers (professional coffee tasters) to describe the intensity of the sugary qualities of the coffee when it is swooshed around in the mouth.
What Creates Sweetness in Coffee?
In coffee the sweetness is produced by solutions of sugars, glycols, and alcohols as well as some amino acids that together create a variety of sweet aroma descriptors (e.g., chocolaty, fruity, caramelly).
Coffee and Espresso Brewing Tips
To learn the secrets of brewing gourmet coffee to appreciate its fine flavors and aromas see our detailed section on Coffee Brewing. You can also read taste profiles of Gourmet Coffees and instructions on preparing Espresso Drink Recipes.