What Coffee Should I Try First? [The Ultimate Guide]

Coffee is great and I can’t imagine a day without it. There are many options so I can pick one that’s right for that day. But having these options can also intimidate any newcomer to the coffee universe. Are you a beginner looking to dive into the world of coffee but confused with all the options? We got you.

What coffee should I try first? For an absolute beginner, the best choice is a coffee that comes with milk in it. A latte that is made from medium roasted beans will be a great place to start. Once you get used to that, you can try darker roasts. You can also try flavored coffee at this point. Then you can switch gears and try black coffee and even an espresso if your taste buds can handle it.

Best Coffee Drinks For Beginners

As a beginner, you won’t do well with a shot of ristretto. You gotta start with drinks that will ease you into the coffee world.

Here are some drinks that are perfect for people who are new to coffee. It starts light and slowly adds more coffee (in terms of strength) to the mix.


Cafe Latte

Latte is a great way to start your coffee journey. A latte is an espresso shot that is topped with steamed milk and a layer of froth.

The advantage of a latte is that it reduces the bitter quotient of coffee and gives a tasty drink. As a newcomer, you can taste the coffee notes better without any burnt or bitter aftertaste.

To make it better, you can try a flavored latte with vanilla or other additives.


A cappuccino is very similar to a latte, but it uses just frothed milk on top of an espresso shot. There is no steamed milk here.

If you want to have more coffee in your cup, then the cappuccino might be a better choice. It is stronger than a latte and you might be able to taste some of the coffee’s bitter notes.

Like the latte, you can also choose to have a flavored cappuccino if the amount of coffee is too much for you.



If you have a sweet tooth and are not willing to let it go, then a mocha/mochaccino is your friend.

In a mocha, you get some chocolate syrup at the bottom, an espresso shot, and some steamed milk. The drink gives you a nice touch of coffee bitterness that is married well with the sweetness of the chocolate syrup.

With a variety of chocolate syrups to choose from, your coffee can be sweet or sweeter depending on your choice.

Iced Coffee With Milk (Cold Brew)

If hot coffee is not your thing, then you can try some iced coffee with milk.

All you need to do is to add some ice cubes to a cold brew coffee and add some milk to infuse sweetness. The resulting drink is an excellent choice for beginners (so thank me later).

Cold Brew Coffee

Cold brew coffee is a very good choice for newcomers.

Making a cold brew coffee is easy (more on that later) and you can store it for 7 to 10 days which means you don’t have to make coffee every day.

Most cold brew drinkers will add milk to the mix so you don’t get a harsh coffee drink. Even without milk, the overall taste isn’t very strong which makes a good choice for new coffee enthusiasts.

French Press Coffee (or Aeropress)

A french press or Aeropress is a great way to make excellent coffee.

The coffee you get from these fancy (kidding!) equipments is pretty good and is not very bitter.

If you must, you can add milk and even some sweetening agents to make the overall taste better.

Black Coffee

Black Coffee

Making black coffee with a drip coffee machine is one routine you will find in most coffee lovers’ lives.

Black coffee can be harsh as it doesn’t come with any milk. But once you get used to the taste, you will fall in love with it every time you take a sip off a brand new cup.

You can sweeten your coffee without sugar if you feel like your coffee is too bitter for your taste.


Espresso is probably the strongest coffee out there in terms of raw coffee strength. The concentration is pretty high even though the amount of caffeine is comparatively lower.

That’s why espresso should be the last coffee drink you should try. If you want to try an espresso shot first, then you might rethink your decision to include coffee in your daily life.

You can also try flavored espresso or simply add milk and make it a latte if you’re better off this way.

The coffee drinks discussed are just a small portion of what you can get in the world of coffee. Many other options might suit you better.

So make sure to do your own research in addition to everything we’ve talked about in this section.

Brewing Methods – Perfect For Beginners

By this time, you would have gotten an idea that you can brew your coffee using different methods. But not all methods are made with beginners in mind.

Let’s discuss a few methods that are perfect for beginners to try. There is no rocket science involved and you can make a hot (or cold) cup of coffee that delights your taste buds.

Cold Brew

Cold brew is the easiest way to start brewing your own coffee.

All you need is coarsely ground coffee, water, and a mason jar (or any container with a lid).

Mix water and coffee grounds in the right ratio, and keep it in your refrigerator for 8 to 12 hours (or more if required).

Once the time is over, filter the extras and you have a delectable jar of cold brew coffee.

It is a better-served chill with some ice cubes and milk. You can also add a flavoring agent to take your coffee to the next level.

French Press

Making coffee using a french press is pretty simple.

It is one of the easier ways to make a quick cup of coffee. The french press is not that expensive so it is easy even for a newcomer to invest in one.

With a french press, you are going to take 4 minutes to brew your coffee which is pretty fast.

One word of advice, go for a steel french press as opposed to a glass one. It is sturdier and can handle a few falls without breaking.


An Aeropress is an improvement over the french press (or some would say).

The device uses both hot water and pressure to make you a cup of delicious coffee.

If you have a french press, then investing in an Aeropress wouldn’t be necessary. But if you are trying other methods and want to try something different, then you will be happy to own an Aeropress at home.

Pour Over

Pour over is one of the most traditional coffee making techniques that doesn’t involve any machine.

All you need is filter paper that fits in your mug. You can add coffee grounds on top of the filter paper and pour hot water on its head. The water extracts the coffee from the grounds and gets collected in the jar (or mug) below.

Drip Coffee

Drip coffee is very much like pour-over but is automated and makes use of a drip coffee machine.

You can add coffee grounds and water to your coffee maker, and it will make a cup of hot coffee whenever you want. You can even program it to make a cup of coffee in the morning so that you can have one as soon as you wake up.

Instant Coffee

Coffee lovers hate instant coffee.

But it is a great way to taste coffee when you don’t have a lot of time and money to spend on coffee. It is cheap and can be made in minutes without the need to learn any equipment.

For some, instant coffee is good because they don’t have to spend too much time picking the right coffee and the right brewing method.

If you like instant coffee, there is nothing to be ashamed of. For some, instant coffee clicks and that’s perfectly fine.

Understanding The Basics

If you’re not going to make your own coffee, then you don’t have to stick with this section. You can simply go to a coffee shop and order the drink of your choice.

But if you’re looking to make quality coffee at the comfort of your home, then this section will come in handy.

Coffee Beans

Coffee beans will make or break your coffee. The higher the quality of your coffee beans, the better your coffee.

There are two types of coffee beans that are predominately cultivated and used throughout the world namely Arabica and Robusta coffee beans.

Robusta coffee beans are cheaper and come with a harsher coffee taste. Arabica coffee beans, on the other hand, are more expensive and give you an enhanced overall coffee flavor.

If you’re looking to make a good cup of coffee, then you should try Arabica coffee beans. Though they are expensive, they will make up for it in taste.

Most instant coffee comes with Robusta beans and hence have a cheap price tag attached to them.

Roast Types

Once you’ve selected the coffee beans, it is now time to roast them.

There are three main types of roasting namely

  • Light roast
  • Medium Roast
  • Dark roast

With a light roast, the coffee beans will retain most of their acid content. The resulting coffee can be a bit sour which might or might not be up to your taste.

Most hipster coffee and third-wave coffee shops prefer lightly roasted coffee beans as it is getting more attention in the market.

Related Read: Why is hipster coffee sour?

The medium roast is the most commonly used roast as it is the most balanced of all. The taste of the coffee is perfect (for most) and so is the acid content.

The dark roast is preferred for making espresso and other brewing methods. It is very pronounced in terms of coffee flavor and contains the least acid content.

If you’re just starting out, I would recommend going for a medium roast as you can get a balanced drink with pretty much any brewing method.

Grinding Size

Once your coffee beans are roasted, it is now time to grind them.

You can do this in your home or take your beans to a local grinder and get it done.

There are different levels of grinding namely,

  • Very coarse
  • Coarse
  • Medium
  • Fine
  • Extra fine

Depending on your brewing method, your grind will also change.

If you’re going to use the french press or cold brew, then you need to grind your coffee beans coarsely.

Fine and extra-fine coffee grounds will be perfect to make an espresso or Turkish coffee.

Medium ground coffee beans will be fine with most coffee brewing techniques and that is precisely why I recommend them for anyone who’s just starting their coffee journey.


Do you need coffee gear to be a full-fledged coffee master?

Of course not.

You don’t need any special pieces of equipment to make a fine cup of coffee. You can make cold brew coffee with just the coffee grounds, water, and a mason jar. Pour-over coffee is another simple, equipment-less coffee.

If you are looking for automation, then a drip coffee machine will do the trick.

A french press or Aeropress will also be needed if those are your weapons of choice. If espresso is your poison, then you’re going to need an espresso machine which is very expensive to own at your home.

The bottom line is that you’re not going to need equipment to make a good cup of coffee. Having said that, a french press is relatively inexpensive and makes a solid cup of coffee.


Here are some miscellaneous things you should know while learning the art of making coffee.

Coffee To Water Ratio

To make a tasty cup of coffee, you must use a good coffee to water ratio. Add less or more of either coffee or water, then you’re going to end up with a liquid that is nothing close to a good coffee.

Here are some coffee to water ratios for the famous brewing methods.

Brewing MethodCoffee To Water Ratio
Cold Brew1:14
French Press1:14
Drip Coffee Maker1: 15

Water Temperature

You need to make sure that your water is neither too hot nor too cold.

Having the right water temperature will also ensure the right amount of extraction during the brewing process.

As a general rule, the right temperature of the water when brewing coffee is between 195 F and 205 F.

When the water is too hot, you risk over-extracting which can turn your coffee into a bitter and burnt mess. If the water temperature is too low, then you risk under-extracting your coffee which can be sour and watery.

Water Type

There are no hard rules here.

Every type of water can deliver a different coffee even with all the variables intact.

For some, tap water makes the best coffee while for others, bottled water works fine.

It is up to you to experiment and find out which works the best for you.

Closing Thoughts

First of all, we welcome you to the world of coffee.

As a beginner, the sea of choices can be overwhelming. We hope that this post helped you to understand the basics.

If you are a greenie, then always start with a milk coffee. It is sweeter and delivers the coffee flavor without being too harsh. You can then move on to more coffee-filled drinks like cold brew coffee and french coffee. As expresso (or ristretto) shot should be the last destination.

There is no need to hurry the process. It is your own journey and you can learn and improve in your own time.

If you have any questions, we are here to help.

Till then, happy caffeinating!

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