coffee cupping

First official coffee tasting post

Haven’t posted anything for a while and there’s a valid reason behind my absence : law ! As a law student I don’t have many privileges and my free time is limited. However, what I do have is a good excuse for things I’m too lazy to do 😉

Nevertheless, during my “vacation” I gathered some material for this blog and thought about where I want to take it. As you may or may not know, I live in France where coffee culture is just starting to develop. Bordeaux is known worldwide for the wine but we don’t have Starbucks. Instead, there are some amazing coffee shops which I am planning to visit and write about here. I also noticed some new coffees in my nearby supermarket and decided to do some coffee tasting on my own. Here are the results:

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General impression :

It changed the way I see coffee. My tasting skills aren’t so sophisticated but I do know that I felt a red peppery note. The taste lingered in my mouth for hours and it was sweet and peppery and spicy.

About the coffee:

It’s a 100% Arabica, labeled with the Max Havelaar and Bio logo. This means that the company, Meo, is a member of a fair trade organization that helps producers in developing countries achieve better trading conditions.
10728600_10154746705055015_763032375_n (2)Specifics:

I must admit, I was pretty surprised when I felt peppers in my coffee. Though the picture is black and white, coffee isn’t.

Ratings * :

Aroma (the way coffee smelled): 4

Sweetness: 5 (it was so lovely)

Taste (acidity/sourness): 3 (the sweetness was stronger than the acidity)

Body: 4 (it was well balanced, not too creamy not too thin)

Bitterness: 5 (it had a rough finish)

Aftertaste: 3 (sweetness, spicy/peppery feeling on my tongue stayed for hours → not a pepper fan, but it was a new taste and I always appreciate new things)

*I’m not a professional, these notes are based on how the coffee tasted to me.

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The delicious art of coffee cupping

Coffee cupping is the equivalent of wine tasting. However, there’s this whole process attached to it and if you put me in a Cupping Party I’ll be as excited as a kid in Disney World.
excited-kid
The coffee we all drink and enjoy has already been tasted by professionals while it was being prepared in the factory. When the coffee beans roast, the workers take some out for testing. They take them to the lab where coffee tasters make sure that the beans aren’t rotten, and that the aroma/acidity/body/flavor of the coffee is as it should be.

6715941947_479f278a5f_zThey don’t actually DRINK it, they sniff and slurp (YES, they must slurp loudly), taste the flavor and spill out the coffee. But it’s actually NOT THAT SIMPLE. Here’s a guide from HAS BEAN COFFEE that explains the process.

BrewGuide-Cupping

 

I’m new to this as much as most of you are. I found a cupping chart and a flavor wheel that might be helpful. I just need to start practicing this delicious art more frequently in order to get better at it. And I found a new excuse for slurping and drinking coffee! 😛