Now, in almost 2022, it is reckless to behave like these 20 years have not happened. You have competition, you have certain standards and expectations from the customers, you have new brewing methods, different consumption habits, an abundance of offers online…It would be madness to still be basing your “key difference” at the specialty coffee market as “We source the best coffees and roast them to perfection, showcasing the best flavours the terroir is giving us”.
Many things are wrong with the previous statement – I will not get into details – but the most important thing is that it is not leading anywhere. It is not helping your customer to identify who you are, what kind of offer you have – and if you are, or not, close to what he is looking for.
This year’s Portuguese Aeropress Championship is over, and here I am, a week later, feeling like writing about it, or, better said – about the shocking realisation that I experienced during the preparation stage, and that is giving me some food for thought now.
We all know that coffee making is made of balancing multiple varieties, and hitting all of them, getting all of the factors right, makes up that delicious cup of coffee in the end.
Everything matters, from the amount of water in your kettle to the material your vessel is made from, from the mineral content of your water to the outside temperature and humidity. There are just so many variables to juggle. Probably too many to be consistent.
Sometimes it happens, and you discover that you are brewing coffee that has some roasting issues, and is not developed properly. Of course, before blaming the roaster, make sure that you are doing everything right in your department. Sensory memory and experience helps – if you tasted many coffees and discussed them with other people, you have a clear understanding of what underdeveloped roast tastes like.
What can you do if you get one? How can you modulate the brewing profile to mitigate the roasting problems?