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HOW TO TASTE COFFEE WITH YOUR COFFEE BAG

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Usually, people who are really nerdy and passionate about coffee go through something called ‘a cupping’ to assess and examine a coffee. The reason this method is chosen is because it has the least amount of human interaction in the brewing method, as human interaction can make a coffee taste completely different. For example, an espresso made from a barista just starting out will most likely have entirely different flavours and elements than one brewed from someone who has spent years in the field, even though the beans are the same. This method usually involves brewing loose (freshly ground) coffee in a certain kind of cup, mixing it, and removing the grounds and foam floating around the top of the cup with something called a cupping spoon.

However, this might be an intimidating process, so I’m going to show you a quick guide to the tasting process using our coffee bags. The bioweb forming the actual coffee bag does not have any distinct taste, so you don’t have to worry about opening them up and pouring the loose grounds and mess around with cupping spoons and the like. This is all for fun, so keep that in mind and don’t be intimidated 😊

Key terms:

Flavour: A simple term. The taste of the coffee, what does it taste like? Every coffee and roast tastes different, similar to wine. What kind of flavours can you find, think of classic flavour comparisons when it comes to coffee such as: berries, citrus, chocolate, nuts and many more. You can start with broad flavours when you’re beginning (like berry) and then narrow it down to more specific flavours when you’re starting to get a hang of it.

Aroma: The coffee’s smell. What can you pick up from the coffee’s smell? This is important as a large part of what we can taste actually has to do with smell and aroma.

Body: The body of the coffee is how it feels, the consistency. A full-bodied coffee might have a texture that feels smooth, buttery and syrupy. Coffees usually range from light/thin, medium and full.

Finish: The aftertaste of the coffee.

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The guide:

1.      Take one coffee bag of each kind of coffee and remove its packaging. You can add a note on which coffee is which, but it is also important to remove any visual cues that might impact your taste.

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2.      Have one extra glass of cold water poured next to all of the cups. Boil your water, and let it cool for a bit (the ideal temperature to brew coffee in is around 93-96 degrees Celsius, so to not distort the flavours. Put one coffee bag in each mug and pour 150 grams or 150ml of hot water into the mug. Set a timer for four minutes.

3.      After the four minutes have gone, it’s time to stop the brewing process. Remove the bag from the mug and stir the coffee with your spoon to even out the flavours. Remove any foam that might have appeared on top of the coffee as the coffee grounds started to brew, as this usually produces a bitter aftertaste and will obstruct the tasting process. As you stir the cup you might want to smell the coffee and note what aromas you can find, can you find different ones for each coffee? Write them down if you want to.

4.      The coffee might still be too hot to taste properly, if that is the case wait a for a couple of minutes until you feel the coffee is at a good temperature for you.

5.      Take some coffee from the first coffee you want to taste and slurp it. You want to slurp it as this strengthens the natural flavours and will make it easier to pinpoint. I like to do this with my eyes closed as well in order to keep focused on the coffee and to not be distracted.

6.      Ask yourself, what flavours can you notice? Is it fruity? Chocolatey? Nutty? How does the coffee feel in your mouth; what kind of body does it have? Is it more on the acidic side or smoother and deeper? What is its finish like? Does it linger and is it a pleasant aftertaste? Continue doing this, comparing each coffee until you feel satisfied and have noted what you found in each coffee.

I hope you’ve enjoyed my simple guide to coffee tasting! Let us know if you try it out.


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