Great coffee without caffeine

Friday, October 18th, 2013No Comments

Swiss Water Decaf Coffee


As much as we like to knock Decaf coffee – and we, do trust us (Death Before Decaf, Decaf’s Like Kissing Your Sister, Decaf’s Like Sex without the Sex, etc) – Decaf coffee has come a long way. We were reminded about this last year when Cherry Hill Coffee’s David Biglow and James Calder traveled to Burnaby, British Columbia to have a first hand look at how coffee is decaffeinated on a tour of the Swiss Water Decaffeinated Coffee Company facility, where all of our delicious decaf coffee comes from for our Sansa Decaf Blend, Decaf Espresso and Caffeine Wise™ Coffee.

Decaffeinated coffee today isn’t your dad’s decaf. Unfortunately though, some of us are still drinking in the dark ages. You see, most decaffeination processes employ chemical solvents such as methylene chloride or ethyl acetate to strip caffeine molecules from the green coffee bean.

At Swiss Water, water is sourced from the Coast Mountains to gently remove the caffeine until the coffee beans are 99.9% caffeine-free, while maintaining the bean’s distinctive origin and flavor characteristics. It’s not rocket science, but almost. For the science buffs and six sigma black belts out there you can learn more about the process here. If you’re drinking Decaf from Cherry Hill Coffee you can be sure that no chemicals were used to remove the caffeine from the coffee.

The folks over at Swiss Water have done a great job debunking some misconceptions about Decaf coffee. We thought we’d let the experts at Swiss Water shed some light on those lingering myths for you.

Myth 1. Decaf contains harsh or harmful chemicals: While it’s true that many decaffeination processes employ chemical solvents such as methylene chloride or ethyl acetate to strip caffeine molecules from the green coffee bean, Coffee decaffeinated with SWISS WATER® Process does not. Swiss Water uses water from the Coast mountains of British Columbia to remove the caffeine. Again, not all coffee without caffeine is created equal, so learn to ask the right questions to ensure you get the best experience possible.

Myth 2. Decaf tastes funny: Some chemical methods to remove caffeine from coffee (see myth 1) may subtly alter the coffee’s taste. (Ethyl acetate, for example, can leave an apple note.) But that is not an issue when you drink quality coffee that has had its caffeine removed in a non-chemical way, such as with Swiss Water Process decaf coffee. When it’s done like this, the bean’s distinctive origin and flavor characteristics are not altered, and all you taste is great coffee. Ask around at your favourite coffee shops about the type of beans they use, and the type of decaf process. It can make a huge difference.

Myth 3. Coffee’s health benefits come from caffeine: Actually, most of the health benefits derived from coffee come from the antioxidants effect of the polyphenols contained within the coffee, regardless of whether there is caffeine in it or not. In fact, some of the health benefits are even stronger when the caffeine has been removed.

Myth 4. Even decaf contains a significant amount of caffeine: Coffee decaffeinated with SWISS WATER® Process is actually 99.9 percent caffeine free – that is certainly not enough residual caffeine to keep you up at night.

So go ahead, armed with all this information, and try some decaf. We think the coffee lover in you will be pleasantly surprised.

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