Tag Archives: scaa

4 steps to perfecting your pour-over.

Are you one of the thousands of people that have upped their home brewing coffee game? coffee brewerPour overs, Aeropress and so many other single cup brew methods have invaded kitchens across Canada.

Recently we did a post about how to have a better coffee experience. This was more about getting you into a mental state prior to cupping or drinking coffee.

Today I want to talk more about the technical side of how to brew a quality pour-over at home consistently.

However you approach your brewing, you want to make sure it is replicable. When you’re playing with variables, make sure your consistent with what variable you are changing.

Here are the top 4 steps to monitor:

Agitation – are you pulsating your water doses as you get to your desired weight? If so, how much and how often?

Stirring – are you stirring the coffee at the bloom or once you’ve hit your water weight?

Particle size – Are you adjusting your coffee particle size according to the amount of coffee you’re brewing? Are you keeping it consistent?

Temperature – have you played around with brewing your coffee one or two degrees hotter or cooler?

Isolating variables will help you pin point how an action affects outcome and if it was a desirable outcome or not. By isolating the variables you can replicate the results next time you brew.

I hope this helps you get a better cup every morning and give you a better day every week.

Roaster, Barista and Customer; Deciphering The Code

Coffee roasting profiles can often be confusing and the tasting notes on bags misleading. As Screen Shot 2013-07-12 at 2.53.50 PMyou develop your coffee pallet you’ll depend less on written descriptions and trust your own sense of taste.

The most common way I hear customers describe a coffee roasts profile are light, medium and dark; Only 3 descriptions for an enormous amount of possibilities.

What do these mean, and how can we help customers find what they are actually looking for?

In the roasting world there are many ways that we attempt to capture the roast more accurately and consistently; The SCAA has color tiles with numerical correspondents, lots of roasters use Agtron (a device that uses infrared light to analyze color and gives out a roast score with a numerical value.) Other still, go by measuring the bean temperature at the termination of roast. (or all 3.)

All this to help us recreate a great roast and deliver a consistent product.

This is just a little peak behind the veil on the science and intuition that goes into roasting. Keep in mind we’re not even touching on the subject of profiling.

As baristas (baristi) we want to provide the customer with exactly what they’re looking for, and sometimes that means trying to read between the lines.

More often than not, someone looking for dark roast is looking for “quality” and that’s what they associate with it. Sometimes they just want something with a heavier mouth feel, but rarely are they looking for a charred and mystical third crack.

So trust your barista intuition and always give your customers the best experience you can, while propelling our industry forward.

Coffee, Connecting and Growing Intellectually.

For the last 5 years there has been a fantastic event called the SCAA Symposium. This is a great two day function that attracts some of the brightest and most influential people in the coffee industry.

There were many great lecturers this year but one of the shortest and most intriguing for me was Peter Giuliano’s lecture on coffee and connection. He does a great job uncovering how coffee = connection and connection = intelligence.

Enjoy.