It’s 7:30 am in the morning. My fresh hand brewed coffee is ready. Although I’m still tired, I’m waiting the minimum ten minutes to cool it down, to taste all the nice flavors. The box says to expect to get a bright flavor with notes of maple syrup and citrus. Awesome, right? The first taste. Something went wrong. It’s under-extracted. Obviously, something went wrong. My TDS confirmed my tasting – 1.07%. The troubleshooting begins: compared to yesterday, I’m asking myself, did I change:
my recipe? No.
the grinder setting? No.
my brewing method? No.
changed the water? No.
What the hell? But I won’t give up!
Did the awesome sunny Florida weather changed? No.
What about my brew-technique? Same here, no change.
Then suddenly it came to my mind – there are new dude, a new variety and another country! I set my grinder a bit finer and here we go – 1.33%. While I give my new brewing a next try, I’m thinking that this beautiful looking plant is a real diva…
Biological – It is a natural product
Its taste depends on quality potential of the bean, weather conditions, soil, yield potential, processing, human factor and so on. Like your apple tree in the garden, every crop is different. One year might be awesome, the next year could be a nightmare. Coffee and its taste is never the same: it’s a biological product. So why does my coffee always taste the same, you might asked yourself now? Good question! You have now entered door No.1 in the world of coffee.
Individual – How do you like your coffee?
You like your favorite drink with milk and/or sugar? Or nothing compares with a classic cappuccino, right? Or maybe you like a strong black one? And what about a super-extra-special-frappu-vanilla-flavored-double-shot-maple-syrup-topped-I-don’t-know-what-coffee? You probably get it. There are so many different ways to drink coffee out there. Everyone has their one favorite way. The strange thing is, most people don`t really know how to taste it. Also every coffee recipe is different. There is no standard-recipe for a cappuccino. There is no standard-recipe for a „strong“ coffee. And last but not least coffee in different places taste never the same. So summarized: drinking your „favorite“ coffee is never the same.
Tricky – Different equipment and skills
In theory, coffee preparation is very easy. You grind roasted coffee and pour water over it. Is that simple? No! It all depends on what you brew and the way you want to brew it. Every method needs his own equipment and his own settings. Every coffee has its own characteristics, so you have to know how to use it. It’s all about your skills. Furthermore, there are a lot of possibilities why your favourite drink isn’t correctly extracted. Even the weather is important. Tricky, isn’t it?
Manipulating – A marketing story to tell
I love marketing! With coffee, you are never buying the product, you buy the story and experience behind it. Take a closer look on your coffee box at home. What does it say? You probably see and wonderful package design. Maybe with a nice picture with a farmer? And there are all these colorful labels, saying that your beans is great for everybody. But how do you know the most important thing when it comes to quality and sustainability? Is it date of roast, crop season, grades, etc? How do you know, that your coffee really affects the farmers in a positive way? Is their work the money worth? How much is your work worth?
Challenging – what do you really want and need?
As I said before, you need the right equipment to get the right things extracted. And there are tons of different machines, grinders, methods, etc. out there. The jungle is huge. And unfortunately, good equipment is expensive, but often it is worth the money. So whether you are planning to open a new café or a nice coffee spot at home, you really have to understand what exactly you want to do, before you waste too much money or spend too less.
Awesome, but complicated – a real diva
I told you the beautiful plant is a diva. But this is not bad news, of course not. This is just what you should keep in mind, when you are just starting or already dealing with it. No matter how the diva affects your life, at home or at work, you are standing in a great universe. Behind every door, new doors are right in front of you, asking you new questions. So if you’re accepting this and if you are open for the new doors right in front of you, you probably love coffee.