A cup of work-from-home coffee has a predetermined lifecycle: You pour a steamy mug of joe, set it down next to your laptop to refrain from burning your tongue, and before you know it, an hour has passed and your coffee is stone cold. You pop it in the microwave to nuke it for a few seconds, press the cup to your lips and grimace. It’s bitter. Bitter in a way that makes you wonder if someone poured a Romeo and Juliet-style vial of poison into it.
Does this sound familiar? No matter how you’re trying to reheat your coffee ― in the microwave, on the stovetop, whatever ― you’ve no doubt shared this experience. Because however you do it, reheating coffee brings out compounds that make it taste decisively more bitter. We talked to experts who explained how this happens and offer a few realistic solutions to help you avoid falling into this pattern.