French Roast Coffee: The Ultimate Guide for Dark Roast Lovers

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Written By Chad Kelley

The overly caffeinated chef dad taking you down the rabbit hole of caffeinated knowledge

Imagine yourself in a quaint Parisian café, sipping on the most exquisite cup of coffee while the aroma of freshly roasted beans fills the air. Welcome to the world of French Roasted Coffee!

Women sitting in a Parisian cafe sidewalk with french roast coffee and croissant

In this article, we’ll dive into a few intriguing topics:

  • What is French Roast Coffee?

  • French Roast vs. Dark Roast

  • Is French Roast beans stronger than dark roast?

  • French Roast vs. Italian Roast Coffee

  • Best French Roast Coffees on Amazon

  • How Should I brew French roast coffee beans?

  • Flavor and Taste Comparison: French Roast, Dark Roast, Italian Roast

So grab your favorite mug, fill it up with your preferred brew, and let’s get started on this caffeinated adventure!

What Is French Roast Coffee?

To understand the magic behind French Roast Coffee, let’s begin with the roasting process. In the coffee world, roasting is an art form that transforms humble green coffee beans into the flavorful, aromatic delight we all love.

French Roast Coffee refers to a specific roasting style where the beans are roasted to a deep, dark brown color. This roasting level is achieved by exposing the beans to high temperatures for an extended period, allowing the natural oils to rise to the surface.

The result is a bold, almost smoky flavor, and slightly bitter taste that is characteristic of French Roast Coffee.

But what sets French Roast apart from other roasts? The answer lies in the roasting degree, which we’ll explore in the next section as we compare French Roast with Dark Roast.

French Roast Vs. Dark Roast

As we delve further into the realm of roasted coffee, it’s essential to understand the difference between French Roast and Dark Roast. While these terms are sometimes used interchangeably, they actually represent distinct roasting levels.

Roasting Degree:

The primary difference between French Roast and Dark Roast lies in the degree of roasting. French Roast is a darker roast compared to your standard Dark Roast. During the roasting process, French Roast coffee beans reach a higher temperature, resulting in a deep, dark brown hue and an oily surface.

3 levels of roasted coffee beans. Light Roast, Medium Roast and Dark Roast

Flavor Profile:

Due to the extended roasting time, a French Roast coffee taste like a bold, smoky, and slightly bitter cup of wake up juice. In contrast, Dark Roast typically has a smoother, more mellow taste, with subtle notes of chocolate or caramel. While both roasts are strong, French Roast has a more intense, robust profile.


As coffee beans roast, their acidity decreases. French Roast Coffee has a lower acidity level compared to Dark Roast, which contributes to its distinct, full-bodied flavor.

Ultimately, the choice between French Roast and Dark Roast depends on your personal taste preferences. If you’re a fan of bold, intense flavors and low acidity, then French Roast might be your go-to choice. But if you prefer a smoother, mellower taste, Dark Roast could be your ideal brew.

Related Article: Does Cinnamon Reduce Acid in Coffee?

Is French Roast Beans Stronger Than Dark Roast?

Now that we’ve established the differences between French Roast and Dark Roast, let’s address a common misconception: is French Roast stronger than dark roast? The answer depends on what you consider “strong.”

Flavor Strength:

When it comes to flavor strength, French Roast is definitely more intense than Dark Roast. As previously mentioned, the extended roasting time of french roasts results in a bold, smoky, and slightly bitter taste. This robust flavor profile is what many people associate with a “strong” cup of coffee.

Caffeine Content:

If you define strength in terms of caffeine content, you might be surprised to learn that French Roast and Dark Roast coffees are not necessarily stronger than their lighter roasts counterparts. As coffee beans roast, they lose a small amount of caffeine. While the difference is minimal, a lighter roast coffee will generally contain slightly more caffeine than a dark or French Roast.

Bean Density:

Roasting also affects the whole coffee bean’s density. Darker roasts, like French Roast, have less density due to the extended roasting time. This means that, when measured by volume, French Roast beans will produce a weaker coffee compared to dark roast beans. However, when measured by weight, the strength should be similar.

French Roast beans can be considered stronger in terms of flavor intensity, but not necessarily in terms of caffeine content or density when compared to dark roast beans. Your perception of strength will depend on your individual taste and brewing method.

French Roast Coffee Beans coming out of the coffee roaster into the hopper to cool

French Roast Vs. Italian Roast Coffee

Now that we’ve tackled the French Roast vs. Dark Roast debate, let’s dive into another popular comparison: French Roast vs. Italian Roast Coffee. Both of these roasts are on the darker side of the roasting spectrum, but there are some key differences to consider.

Roasting Degree:

Italian Roast is even darker than French Roast. It undergoes an extended roasting time, often past the second crack, resulting in beans with a nearly black color and a shiny, oily surface. While both roasts are dark, Italian Roast pushes the limits of roasting to achieve its signature appearance.

Flavor Profile:

As you might expect, the flavor profile of Italian Roast is quite intense. It often exhibits a stronger, more bitter taste than French Roast, with bold, smoky, and even slightly burnt notes. While French Roast is robust, Italian Roast takes it a step further with its powerful, almost charred flavor.

Acidity And Body:

Just like French Roast, Italian Roast has low acidity due to the prolonged roasting process. The body of Italian Roast is typically heavier and richer than that of French Roast, which contributes to its full, mouth-coating texture.

In summary, while both French Roast and Italian Roast are dark, bold, and low in acidity, Italian Roast is even darker and more intense in flavor. Your preference will ultimately depend on how much intensity and bitterness you enjoy in your coffee.

Related Article: Alkaline Coffee: A Low Acidic Alternative for Coffee Lovers Everywhere

Best French Roast Coffees On Amazon

Ready to experience the rich, bold flavors of French Roast Coffee? Look no further! We’ve compiled a list of some of the best French Roast Coffees available on Amazon, so you can enjoy a taste of Paris right in your own home.

Green bag of Peet's Coffee. Organic French Roast

Peet’s Coffee French Roast

Peet’s Coffee is a well-known brand with a reputation for high-quality coffee. Their French Roast offers a rich, smoky, and intense flavor that’s sure to please fans of dark roasts.

Bag of Starbucks French Roast Coffee

Starbucks Dark French Roast

Starbucks is a household name in the world of coffee, and their Dark French Roast doesn’t disappoint. With its robust flavor and full body, it’s a great option for those seeking a bold and satisfying cup of joe.

Bag of kicking horse coffee, Grizzly roast coffee

Kicking Horse Coffee, Grizzly Claw

This organic, fair trade coffee from Kicking Horse boasts a deep, dark roast with notes of dark chocolate and cacao nibs. It’s a delicious, eco-friendly choice for coffee enthusiasts.

White bag of San Francisco Bay Coffee French Roast Coffee Beans

San Francisco Bay Coffee, French Roast

San Francisco Bay Coffee offers a smooth and rich French Roast that’s perfect for those who enjoy a bold but balanced flavor. As a bonus, the brand uses environmentally-friendly packaging.

Bag of Italian roast coffee from Lavazza

Lavazza Gran Selezione

Lavazza, an iconic Italian brand, brings a touch of European elegance to their French Roast. The Gran Selezione offers a full-bodied and intense flavor profile with hints of chocolate.

Bag of Black Rifle Coffee Company Beyond Black Roasted Coffee Beans.

Black Rifle Coffee Company Beyond Black Roast

Founded by veterans, Black Rifle Coffee Company is committed to delivering premium coffee while supporting military and first responder communities. Their Beyond Black Roast is a powerful French Roast with bold, intense flavors, perfect for those who crave an extra kick in their morning brew.

These are just a few of the fantastic French Roast Coffees available on Amazon. Give one (or more) of these options a try, and discover the bold, smoky flavors that make French Roast a beloved choice among coffee aficionados.

Many coffee companies will offer various dark roast coffee beans but not necessarily label them as French or Italian roast. You may of noticed in my list above that these are not exclusively French Roasts. When it comes time to look for a new French Roasted coffee bean, I would keep the search open to Dark Roast coffee as well. You will be surprised what you find.

Related Article: Drip Coffee vs Pour Over: Master the Art of Coffee Brewing with Bee House

How Should I Brew French Roast Coffee Beans?

Brewing the perfect cup of French Roast Coffee is a rewarding experience that starts with choosing the right brewing method. Here are some tips to help you get the most out of your French Roasted beans:

Chemex Pot with coffee in it

Choose The Right Grind:

For optimal flavor extraction, it’s crucial to grind your beans according to your preferred brewing method. For a French press, use a coarse grind; for drip coffee makers, go for a medium grind; and for espresso machines, opt for a fine grind.

Use Fresh, Filtered Water:

Water quality plays a significant role in the taste of your coffee. Be sure to use fresh, filtered water to avoid any unpleasant flavors that may come from tap water.

Measure Your Coffee-to-water Ratio:

A general guideline is to use 1 to 2 tablespoons of ground coffee per 6 ounces of water. This ratio can be adjusted according to your taste preferences.

Brew At The Right Temperature:

For French Roast Coffee, the ideal brewing temperature is between 195°F and 205°F. This range allows for the best extraction of flavors without scalding the coffee.

Experiment With Different Brewing Methods:

French Roast Coffee is versatile and can be enjoyed using various brewing methods, such as pour-over, drip coffee maker, French press, or espresso machine. Don’t be afraid to try different methods to find the one that best suits your taste.

By following these tips and adjusting according to your preferences, you’ll be well on your way to brewing the perfect cup of French Roast Coffee.

Enjoy the bold, smoky flavors, and savor every sip of your caffeinated masterpiece.

Related Article: The Ultimate Guide to Brewing Specialty Coffee at Home

Flavor And Taste Comparison: French Roast, Dark Roast, Italian Roast

When it comes to choosing your ideal coffee roast, understanding the flavor differences between French Roast, Dark Roast, and Italian Roast can help guide your decision. Let’s take a closer look at the flavor profiles and taste characteristics of each roast:

Bag of spilled french roast coffee beans

French Roast:

  • Roasting Level: Dark, with a deep brown color and oily surface

  • Flavor Profile: Bold, smoky, and slightly bitter

  • Acidity: Low

  • Body: Full-bodied

  • French Roast is an excellent choice for those who enjoy a robust and intense coffee with a hint of bitterness and low acidity.

Dark Roast:

  • Roasting Level: Medium-dark to dark, with a rich brown color and minimal oil on the surface

  • Flavor Profile: Smooth, mellow, with subtle notes of chocolate or caramel

  • Acidity: Medium-low

  • Body: Medium to full-bodied

  • Dark Roast is ideal for coffee drinkers who prefer a smoother, more balanced flavor with a touch of sweetness and moderate acidity.

Italian Roast:

  • Roasting Level: Very dark, with an almost black color and a shiny, oily surface

  • Flavor Profile: Strong, bitter, with bold, smoky, and slightly burnt notes

  • Acidity: Low

  • Body: Heavy and rich

  • Italian Roast is perfect for those who crave an intense, powerful coffee with a pronounced bitterness and low acidity.

When choosing between French, Dark and Italian Roast, consider your flavor preferences and how much intensity and bitterness you enjoy in your coffee.

Each roast offers a unique taste experience, and experimenting with different coffee roasts can be a delightful way to explore the diverse world of coffee.

Related Article: Vietnamese Coffee vs Thai Iced Coffee: What is the difference?

Key Takeaways

Before we wrap up, let’s summarize the key points and takeaways from this article:

  • French Roast Coffee is characterized by its dark roast level, resulting in a bold, smoky, and slightly bitter flavor with low acidity and a full body.

  • French Roast is darker than Dark Roast but lighter than Italian Roast, with distinct differences in flavor intensity, acidity, and body.

  • French Roast beans have a stronger flavor compared to dark roast beans but do not necessarily contain more caffeine or have a greater density when measured by volume.

  • Some of the best French Roast Coffees available on Amazon include options from Peet’s Coffee, Starbucks, Kicking Horse Coffee, San Francisco Bay Coffee, Lavazza, and Black Rifle Coffee Company.

  • To brew the perfect cup of French Roast Coffee, consider factors such as grind size, water quality, coffee-to-water ratio, brewing temperature, and brewing method.

With this newfound knowledge, you’re well-equipped to embark on your caffeinated journey down the rabbit hole of French Roast Coffee. Enjoy exploring the bold and smoky flavors that make this roast a favorite among coffee enthusiasts!

Bidding Adieu To Our French Roast Adventure

As you venture down the rabbit hole of coffee, exploring the world of French Roast opens up a realm of bold, smoky, and slightly bitter flavors that many coffee aficionados adore. This dark roast offers a unique taste experience, distinct from its counterparts like Dark Roast and Italian Roast.

Armed with the caffeinated knowledge you didn’t know you needed, you’re now prepared to choose the perfect French Roast Coffee, brew it to perfection, and savor every sip of this intense and satisfying beverage.

Embrace the boldness, and let your taste buds revel in the rich and robust flavors of French Roast Coffee.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does French Roasted Coffee Have More Caffeine?

No, French Roasted coffee does not necessarily have more or less caffeine than other roasts. In fact, as coffee beans roast, they lose a small amount of caffeine. While the difference is minimal, a lighter roast coffee will generally contain slightly more caffeine than a dark or French Roast.

French Roast Coffee Benefits

French Roast Coffee offers several benefits, including its bold and intense flavor, low acidity, and full-bodied texture. The dark roasting process reduces acidity, making it a suitable option for those with sensitive stomachs or who prefer a less acidic coffee. Additionally, the rich, smoky flavors provide a satisfying and robust coffee experience for those who enjoy a strong cup of joe.

How Should I Store My French Roast Coffee Beans To Maintain Their Freshness?

To keep your French Roast Coffee beans fresh, store them in an airtight container away from direct sunlight, heat, and moisture. A cool, dark place like a pantry or cupboard is ideal. Avoid storing coffee beans in the refrigerator or freezer, as temperature fluctuations can cause condensation, affecting the beans’ flavor and freshness.