Coffee cupping is the practice of observing the tastes and aromas of brewed coffee. It is a professional practice that can be done by anyone or by “Master Tasters.” What you do is slurp the coffee quickly so it hits your naval passage, spreads to the back of the tongue, and down the throat. This process exaggerates the flavor so eventually you can taste the body, sweetness, and acidity flavors of the coffee.
When talking about the character of coffee from a particular origin, it requires that one have some form of reference. The main objective is to figure out what makes a coffee from Kenya taste so great. It is vital to know what makes it different than other coffees. In other words, what does it mean to taste like a “Kenya”? Once a “Master Taster,” you can distinguish between several flavors from different geographic origins around the world.
Among professionals there are two schools of thinking in regards to how fruit removal and drying should affect coffee flavor:
Some coffees are made through wet-processing, but not all cuppers prefer this method. Wet-processing means the fruit is removed from the bean immediately after picking so that it does not affect the taste of the bean. If the wet-processing is done correctly and with careful precision the coffee will taste clean and refreshing. Any flavor that is added to the coffee through some fluke of the fruit removal it is called a taste defect.
For these coffee lovers certain flavors of the bean taints and faults by the abnormalities from the wet processing method of the fruit removal and the drying. These cuppers appreciate the philosophy behind the product. The various taints and faults given coffee are part of the full expression of coffee and worthy of attention and satisfaction.
We offer free tours Monday-Friday at 10 a.m. and Saturday at 9 a.m., 10 a.m., 11 a.m., and Noon. Visit us to see how cupping works. Maybe you can become a “Master Taster”!