What Is Bold Coffee? And How Do You Make It?

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Coffee is a staple drink in many households. Some prefer it with milk or sugar, while others like it when the coffee is bold.

Bold coffee is more flavorful and more aromatic than regular coffee. It’s not necessarily stronger, though, in terms of caffeine content. 

In this article, you’ll learn more about bold coffee and what distinguishes it from your regular brew. You’ll also find out how to brew bolder coffee at home.

What Is Bold Coffee?

Bold coffee typically has a bright color, a robustly smoky flavor, and a roasty aroma. It also has higher acidity and can be higher in caffeine content. Dark roasted coffee beans usually produce this kind of coffee.

What does bold mean in coffee?

The word bold is a term used to describe coffee with an intense flavor and rich aroma. You can determine the intensity, especially on your first sip. The coffee is also bold when you can smell its strong aroma due to the dark roasted beans. 

However, its boldness doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s high in caffeine. Bold coffee isn’t automatically considered strong coffee. 

Bold vs Strong Coffee: Is Bold Coffee Stronger?

Bold coffee isn’t stronger than strong coffee in terms of taste. 

It’s quite confusing to many, but let’s make everything clear: bold coffee is different from strong coffee. Bold coffee is determined by the coffee’s roast and flavor, while strong coffee depends on the coffee’s caffeine content. 

Making strong coffee is largely about the coffee-to-water ratio and the type of beans used. Strong coffees often taste bitter, but they don’t have to.

Meanwhile, bold coffee is not bitter at all, but you’ll definitely smell the intense and roasty aroma of the darker coffee beans.

Bold vs Regular Coffee: What is the Difference?

Let’s debunk another misconception: bold coffee is also not the same as your regular coffee. Below is a quick comparison between the two types of coffee.

Bold CoffeeRegular Coffee
Flavor and AromaIntense, roasty aromaHas a milder aroma
RoastUsually dark roastAny type of roast
AcidityLess acidicCan be more acidic

Bold vs Regular Coffee: Flavor and Aroma

A bold cup of coffee can be distinguished by its intense wood-like or chocolatey aroma and taste after the first sip and smell, while regular coffee doesn’t have a distinct flavor or aroma.

When your coffee is bold, it doesn’t mean it tastes bitter. But it can taste bitter if the water is too hot or the coffee grounds have been over-extracted. The grind size of dark roasted beans should not also be too fine.

On the other hand, your regular cup of coffee can taste bitter, sweet, fruity, nutty, or creamy, depending on the coffee beans, brewing style, and additives.

Bold vs Regular Coffee: Roast Level

Bold coffee is usually made with dark roasted beans responsible for its intense aroma and flavor, while regular coffee uses any type of roast: light, medium, or dark.

Dark-roasted beans are usually used to brew bold coffee since the longer heating process causes the beans to heighten the packed flavors of every coffee bean.

Regular coffee usually uses medium or medium-dark roast beans, but you can always go milder with a light roast.

Bold vs Regular Coffee: Acidity

Bold coffee is less acidic than regular coffee due to the dark roast coffee beans and longer brewing time.

Coffee is acidic, and the brewing and extraction time affects its acidity. Bold coffees are often brewed slower than regular coffee, further decreasing the acidity.

As for regular coffee, it’s usually acidic, but you can always reduce its acidity by lengthening its brewing time, reducing the water temperature, or changing the grind size.

How Do You Make Coffee Bold? 

Making your coffee bold is not rocket science. Here are a few tips you can try.

1. Choose dark roasted coffee beans

To make your coffee bolder, switch to dark roasted beans. The coffee roast will help bring out the intense aroma and flavor once brewed.

2. Ensure your coffee beans’ freshness

It’s also important to use freshly roasted beans for your bold coffee. The fresher the beans, the more aromatic and tastier the coffee is.

Stick to whole-bean coffee for maximum freshness. Coffee grounds go stale quickly, so grinding your own beans is the best way to get truly fresh coffee.

3. Roast your own coffee beans

You can also roast your beans if you have roasting equipment. Not only can you control your preferred roasting style, but you’ll always be sure that your beans are freshly roasted.

4. Lower the brewing temperature 

Reducing your brewing temperature can help reduce the bitterness and bring out the toastier flavors of dark roasted beans for your bold coffee.

5. Use the bold setting in your coffee maker

Many coffee makers have a bold setting (some coffee makers label it “strong” instead). This includes some Cuisinart coffee makers and most Ninja coffee makers. And let’s not forget the Keurig strong button.

What does bold mean on a coffee maker?

The bold setting of your coffee allows for a longer brewing time. It keeps the hot water brewing for better coffee bean extraction. It also helps dissolve the beans’ oils that break down at different boiling points, intensifying the coffee’s flavor and aroma.

Frequently Asked Question

Does bold coffee have more caffeine?

Dark roast bold coffee has more caffeine if it has a higher coffee-to-water ratio than your light or medium roast brewed coffee.

Contrary to common coffee myths, the roasting method has a trivial impact on caffeine content. Dark roast doesn’t indicate having a stronger caffeine punch. 

Yet, there is a slight difference in the caffeine content between dark roast bold coffee and light roast brewed coffee when measured by volume.

More coffee beans mean more caffeine. However, beans become less dense as you roast them longer due to water loss. If you measure your coffee by scoops, expect dark roast coffee to have less caffeine than light roast coffee.

What’s Next?

Bold coffee is the perfect morning cup. It may not give you much caffeine, but it’s not acidic and lets you appreciate the flavor and aroma of the coffee beans.

If you’re a caffeine junkie, you can always indulge in coffee drinks with a high caffeine content, like espresso, which is stronger than coffee. You can also use some of the strongest K-cups if you have a Keurig coffee machine.

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