Decaf Coffees Post-Roast Shelf Life

Discuss flavors, brew temperatures, blending, and cupping notes.
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#1: Post by stevendouglas »

Last week I was trying some Decaf (Colombia MC Decaf - Huila Pitalito from Sweetmarias). The first couple of days after roast, the crema was flowing and the espresso excellent. I thought I'd finally found the perfect decaf. However, I left for just a couple of days and when I returned (either day 4 or 5 after roast and I did not freeze the beans), the crema had gone on vacation and the espresso was lost without it.

Do decaf coffees have a much shorter shelf-life than caffeinated coffees? If so, it would explain why I've never had a really great decaf espresso despite trying several blends from several commercial roasters. It's very rare that I drink decaf and so the decaf I've ordered has always been 4+ days post roast and sometimes several weeks (although always frozen).
Steve Douglas
Sacramento, CA

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#2: Post by another_jim »

In my experience, decafs have a shorter shelf life as green beans (6 months max) and as roast (a week max). Any resting and outgassing practices you may follow for your regular roasts should not be applied to decafs; it's also better to buy the greens more frequently and in reduced quantity.
Jim Schulman