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Getting deeper into coffee — how cupping classes teach regular folks to taste like the experts

Drink Awesome Coffee and Become a Coffee Connoisseur – Coffee Cupping Classes

Coffee cupping is a big thing now, and it is not an activity reserved for baristas and professionals in the coffee industry. Regular folks that love coffee and would like to improve their knowledge about coffee and explore new tastes and brews, can do it now. There are many coffee roasters that love to educate the public and promote gourmet coffee. Chicago coffee roasters, including Metric Coffee in the West Loop, are leading the way in hosting cupping events to engage and educate patrons, and explain the broader coffee experience. Roasters in other cities are doing the same.

Getting deeper into coffee — how cupping classes teach regular folks to taste like the experts

Getting deeper into coffee — how cupping classes teach regular folks to taste like the experts

It’s five minutes before the weekly public cupping at Metric Coffee, and Harris Nash is a bundle of energy.

While it’s clear he’s had his morning coffee, that’s not the entire reason for his high energy level as visitors arrive at the West Fulton Street roastery. Nash is a live wire because he wants to showcase all the flavors and stories that coffee has to offer, from crop to cup.

It’s an excitement that is gaining momentum with Chicago coffee drinkers — from the casual to the enthusiast. Local roasters Metric, Metropolis, and Passion House and Durham, N.C.-based Counter Culture are leading the way in hosting free cupping events to engage and educate patrons, and to explain the broader coffee experience.

“We want to bring people into the whole process,” said Nash, sales manager and brand ambassador at Metric. “Cupping is so cool. It’s the universal language for coffee tasting.”

Jeff Batchelder, who runs the education program at Counter Culture and has performed dozens of tastings, easily recalls moments when people realized coffee’s full range of flavors — from floral and fruity to earthy to nutty. For some, it’s a moment of enlightenment.

“Once people get past the hurdle of tasting coffee out of a bowl, with a spoon, and slurping it into your mouth, there is usually some kind of empowerment,” he said. “People are blown away by how different coffee can taste.”

What is cupping?

Cupping in the U.S. dates to the early 1900s, evolving from transactions among growers, exporters, importers and roasters. Hills Bros. traders, on the heels of innovations in vacuum-packaging and a pursuit of higher-quality coffee, pioneered cup tasting to base buying decisions on samples of freshly roasted coffee instead of relying on visual inspections of beans. A drawing of a coffee taster even served as an early company trademark on Hills Bros. canisters, the artist’s design inspired by the coffee’s Ethiopian origin.

Today, cuppings are performed daily at most roasters and considered a baseline quality control exercise to check if flavor profiles are on point and roasts are consistent. At Metropolis it happens at 7 a.m. every weekday just as production shifts into high gear. For the public, the roaster includes cuppings at the end of free public roastery tours it hosts twice a month.

“Cupping is a tool for evaluation. It’s a way of deliberately focusing on the different characteristics of a coffee and determining what each coffee has to offer,” said Amy Lawlor, green coffee buyer and quality control manager at Metropolis. “It doesn’t need to be snooty thing. If we can bring people in here to taste for themselves, then they have their own experiential knowledge of how varied coffee can taste.”

Batchelder spent nine years at Intelligentsia Coffee & Tea as a barista and retail educator. Cuppings, he said, ensure consistency.

“If a coffee’s flavor changes or starts to be a little less vibrant, we want to know and respond,” Batchelder said.

Cuppings are also how coffee is graded competitively. Specialty Coffee Association judges score coffees on a range of criteria (fragrance/aroma, flavor, aftertaste, acidity, body, uniformity, balance, cleanliness and sweetness). Accredited evaluators in the coffee world are called Q Graders.

Inviting public in

Over the past two to three years, local roasters have begun to use cuppings to teach customers how to detect flavor notes — blunt and nuanced — that can be found in coffee.

“What becomes pretty apparent when you start cupping is that coffees can be wildly different from one another just based on where they come from, how they’re processed, how they’re roasted,” Lawlor said.

Metric keeps its cupping events simple, offering a small-scale experience without the scrutiny or pretense. At the Fulton Street roastery, it’s about learning to notice the details. Attendees are asked to jot down notes on fragrance (of dry, ground coffee), aroma (once grounds are infused with hot water), and sweetness, acidity, body and overall flavor of selected coffees.

“I don’t want people to become elitist or overeducated,” said Nash, a former director of wholesale coffee at Ipsento Coffee. “The goal is to bring people into the experience.”

While not a chemistry class, there is a bit of science that goes into reaching the potential of a roast. It’s no coincidence cuppings are held in a roaster’s “lab.”

As Nash points out, to catch each coffee at its best, precision is paramount. The water temperature (around 200 degrees) and amount of coffee grounds (10.5 grams) need to be uniform for consistency. Once the brewing begins, coffee goes through stages of development, from bloom (formation of foam from gases released 30 seconds into brewing) to a full extraction (about 4 minutes). Nash encourages cuppers to stop to smell and taste throughout the process to capture how smells and tastes change and mature.

Then there’s “the slurp,” the distinguishable sound anyone who has attended a cupping knows. In order for cuppers to properly aerate the coffee and spray it to the back of their palates, they’re urged to slurp, not sip, the coffee. Some say the louder, the better.

A coffee experience

At Counter Culture, cuppings are part of a broader educational experience. The roaster, considered one of the pioneers in direct-trade and sustainable sourcing, has a regional training center on the Near West Side. It’s one of 13 across the country, and all of them host weekly “Tastings at Ten.”

“It’s all about creating feedback between what’s happening in your mouth and processing it in your brain,” Batchelder said. “Anything we eat or drink can be used for palate development, you just need to dedicate some mindfulness to it.”

Stop by any Friday morning, and the enthusiasm for coffee is palatable.

A visit to a March tasting had a lively mix of regulars, newcomers and entrepreneurs in attendance. And while 16 coffee buffs huddling around a single barista may sound crowded, Batchelder said the number has climbed into the 40s.

Cassandra Hall, of Pilsen, regularly attends and compares cuppings and tastings to auditing a college course.

“I’m pretty geeked up about coffee,” Hall said. “I appreciate the community here. I’ve made friends of the regulars. I think there is an attraction to the craft, learning where it comes from.”

Counter Culture, Intelligentsia and Ipsento host ticketed classes on brewing techniques, sourcing and barista training on a regular schedule.

While public coffee cuppings are not as popular as beer and wine tastings, Nash and Batchelder agree that their popularity is growing — just like interest in specialty coffees — especially with young consumers.

A 2018 study by the National Coffee Association found that 64 percent of U.S. adults drink coffee on a given day, the highest ratio in six years and up for a third consecutive year. Consumption of “gourmet” or specialty coffee stands at 37 percent of coffee drinkers ages 18-24 and 48 percent for those ages 25-39, according to the National Coffee Drinking Trends report.

Nash keeps a narrower scope.

“My hope is if you get anything from a cupping, it is that there are people and families and hard work behind the coffees,” Nash said. “The next tier is that coffee is complex. I would never tell someone they have to know and assess every cup they drink, because you can lose a lot of the beauty of what coffee is as a ritual and connector.

“The goal is that there is a deeper knowledge of where coffee comes from and a deeper appreciation of it.”

Public cupping events

Backlot Coffee: First Monday of every month. Free. 3982 N. Avondale Ave., Chicago, 773-657-3797. First Thursday of every month. 2006 Central St., Evanston. [email protected].

Counter Culture Coffee: 10 a.m. Fridays. Free. Regional training center, 177 N. Ada St., Suite 106, 888-238-5282, [email protected].

Intelligentsia Coffee: First and third Thursdays of the month, part of a ticketed brew class. $40. 3123 N. Broadway; 773-348-8058.

Metric Coffee: 10:30 a.m. Fridays. Free. 2021 W. Fulton St., 312-982-2196; [email protected].

Metropolis Coffee: First and third Fridays of the month, following tour. Free. 3057 N. Rockwell St., 773-338-4904, [email protected].

Passion House Coffee: 3 p.m. Fridays. Free. 2631 N. Kedzie Ave., 312-733-3998, [email protected].

Ipsento Coffee: Monthly, dates and times vary. $10. 1813 N. Milwaukee Ave., 773-904-8177, [email protected].

Tala Coffee: Monthly, dates and times vary. Free. 428 Green Bay Road, Suite B, Highwood, 847-508-0517.

Nespresso invites rivals to join its global coffee pod recycling scheme

Nespresso Invites Rivals to Join its Global Coffee Pod Recycling Scheme

Nespresso uses aluminum pods, which in theory are easy to recycle. Is this enough though? Apparently not. Nespresso has invited rival coffee pod makers to join its global recycling programme in a move to improve the convenience of recycling for customers using single-use aluminium coffee capsules.

Nespresso invites rivals to join its global coffee pod recycling schemeNespresso invites rivals to join its global coffee pod recycling scheme

Nespresso has invited rival coffee pod makers to join its global recycling programme in a move it claims will improve “accessibility and convenience” of recycling services for customers using single-use aluminium coffee capsules.

The portioned coffee brand said it wanted to engage with its competitors in order to develop a global recycling solution for coffee pods, amid concerns the sector encourages throwaway behaviour among consumers.

As one of the leading brands in the sector, Nespresso has come under scrutiny over its green credentials in recent years due to its business model of selling single-use aluminium capsules, which customers place into the firm’s branded coffee machines to produce just one cup per pod.

The coffee pods can only be used once before being discarded, but are fully recyclable. However, public recycling infrastructure is unable to process such small light metal items, and so Nespresso has developed its own programme in the UK offering customers three ways to recycle their aluminium capsules free of charge.

UK customers can either take used pods to a Nespresso boutique, request a home collection, or drop off the used capsules at around 7,000 points – including Collect+ locations – around the country. The used pods are then sent to a specialist recycling firm to produce raw metal material that can be used to make new coffee capsules, or products such as car engines, computers and cans. Any remaining coffee grounds can be used to produce biogas and farm fertiliser.

Nespresso says it recycles around a quarter of its pods in the UK using this process, but has in the past refused to disclose how many pods this accounts for, nor how many pods it sells in the UK each year overall.

The company operates similar recycling schemes in 53 countries, offering customers more than 100,000 coffee pod drop-off points globally, it said.

Yesterday it issued a call out to other rival coffee pod manufactures to join its programme, with a view to developing a universal recycling scheme for aluminium coffee pods.

Company CEO Jean-Marc Duvoisin said aluminium was a valuable and infinitely recyclable material. “We have built a global scheme for recycling our capsules, and by inviting other companies to join our system, we hope to offer a solution for the whole category,” he said. “This decision is aligned with our global initiatives to shape a waste-free future and drive behaviour change towards a circular economy.”

Daniel Katz, who sits on the Nespresso sustainability advisory board and is also chair of the board at green NGO the Rainforest Alliance, said the open invitation for rival capsule manufacturers to join the Nespresso’s recycling scheme had the potential “to drive significant change on one of the key issues that faces the portioned coffee industry – the capsules themselves”.

“Nespresso has worked with the Rainforest Alliance for 16 years on sustainably sourced coffee, and it is inspiring to see the company take ownership of aluminium recycling, helping lead the way and engage competitors, and driving towards a potential global solution to coffee capsule recycling,” he said.

Nespresso has also pledged to use 100 per cent ‘sustainable’ certified aluminium to make its coffee pods from 2020, and in November inked a deal with metals and mining giant Rio Tinto to help achieve this ambition.

What happens to your body when you drink too much coffee

What Happens to Your Body when You Drink Too Much Coffee

It’s almost impossible to overdose on coffee. Well, too much coffee won’t kill you but it will certainly no be good for you. There is a lethal dose of caffeine , but it’s somewhere around 10 grams — the average cup of joe has around 100 milligrams. The average American drinks three cups of coffee per day.

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What happens to your body when you drink too much coffee

  • It’s almost impossible to overdose on coffee. There is a lethal dose of caffeine, but it’s somewhere around 10 grams — the average cup of joe has around 100 milligrams.
  • The average American drinks three cups of coffee per day.

Benji: This is me and I love coffee. The intoxicating nutty aroma. The rich chocolatey taste.

Some days I drink three cups like the average American I am. Other days, I drink more like five or six. But is that too much? First the good news. It’s almost impossible to overdose on coffee.

There is a lethal dose of caffeine but it’s somewhere around 10 grams and the average cup of Joe has around 100 milligrams. You’d likely have to drink 100 cups in rapid succession to OD. But that’s not to say there’s no such thing as too much. The FDA recommends no more than four to five cups a day for the average healthy adult. More than that and you might start to experience some nasty side effects.What happens to your body when you drink too much coffee

Most people take in coffee to increase their focus and concentration but once you take in too much you start to lose that focus People start getting more agitated, irritable.

Benji: That’s thanks to the hormone, adrenaline. When caffeine hits your system it stimulates your adrenal glands which release the hormone into your body. It makes you feel energetic and alert. Perfect for a fight or flight situation. But too much can be a bad thing. Especially if you suffer from anxiety.

Dr. Albert Ahn: But with anxiety you also wanna be careful not to overstimulate or trigger any sort of panic attacks and make anxiety worse, which certainly too much caffeine can do.

Benji: Adrenaline from caffeine can also increase your heart rate. That’s why doctors also recommend against drinking coffee if your heart sometimes beats irregularly. But the risk is really only for bonafide coffee junkies. According to at least two observational studies you have to drink at least nine cups of coffee a day to put yourself at risk of arrhythmia. And finally, there’s the question of sleep. Coffee’s enemy.

Caffeine launches a double threat on your slumber. It blocks the neurochemical adenosine which is what tells your brain that you’re tired. It releases a cocktail of stimulants into your brain. Adrenaline, dopamine, and glutamate. So after downing your sixth cup of coffee, you don’t just feel awake but full of energy. It will power you through that 2:30 meeting or the last class of the day. But if you overdo it, the effect won’t wear off when it’s time for bed.

In one study, researchers monitored the sleep of a dozen volunteers. Some were given a caffeine pill equivalent to about four cups of coffee and others received a placebo instead. Even when the volunteers swallowed the caffeine pills six hours before bedtime, they spent significantly less time in the light stages of sleep. And that can have detrimental effects on daytime function, the authors report.

Dr. Albert Ahn: It’s sort of just stuck in this loop where you’re not sleeping because you drink too much coffee and then you wake up in the morning and you’re not well rested and you’re drinking more coffee just to stay awake in the day.

Benji: Sound familiar? Here’s the good news. If you cut yourself off by 2:00 you typically won’t have trouble falling asleep. That’s because the half-life of caffeine is around five hours. And so most of its stimulating effects will wear off well before the lights go out. And if you also limit your consumption, well then coffee can actually offer a number of health benefits. Research shows that it can help with everything from memory, to exercise, to your relationships with your colleagues. And that’s great because for some of us, coffee is something we’ll just never give up.

New illy Cold Brew Aria™ Creates Nitro Cold Brew Coffee Effect with Richer Effervescence and Flavor by Simply Using Ambient Air

New illy Cold Brew Aria™ – Nitro Coffee with Air

We coffee lovers, owe illy so much. They invented the modern espresso machine, and they invented the best pod espresso machine, and they roast some amazing coffees… Today, they released on the market a nitro injection system, that will transform any coffee into a frothy, effervescent drink, that reminds us of beer. Not sure how the term “cold brew” fits in the title, but the idea is interesting. Air is 78% Nitrogen, so it’s easier to inject air than pure Nitrogen, you don’t need a Nitrogen tank for that, and the taste is pretty close.

New illy Cold Brew Aria™ Creates Nitro Cold Brew Coffee Effect with Richer Effervescence and Flavor by Simply Using Ambient Air

NEW YORK, March 28, 2019 /PRNewswire/ illy, which transformed coffee in 1935 by inventing the modern espresso machine, today again changed its industry by introducing illy Cold Brew Aria™, a tap handle with an embedded adjustable valve that turns cold brew with bubbles, commonly called “nitro cold brew,” into an even richer-tasting and effervescent experience for coffee lovers, and easier for cafes, restaurants, hotels resorts and other on-premise venues to offer. The tap handle-mounted valve draws in ambient air, requires no bulky gas tanks and is offered exclusively for use with illy cold brew made from the brand’s legendary Classico blend, comprised of nine distinct Arabica coffee beans from different countries, produced and sourced to deliver sustainable quality and a premium profit for farmers meeting illy’s industry-leading standards.New illy Cold Brew Aria™ Creates Nitro Cold Brew Coffee Effect with Richer Effervescence and Flavor by Simply Using Ambient Air

The patent pending valve that is the heart of illy Cold Brew Aria system captures ambient air — already 78% nitrogen-rich, by nature — that is immediately infused at high pressure into illy cold brew coffee as it’s dispensed. The combination creates a beautiful, long cascading effect in the glass and a rich creamy head. illy Cold Brew Aria is the first-ever system that infuses ambient air into coffee to create a “nitro effect” without the use of space-consuming nitrogen tanks or air compressors.

Importantly, the illy Cold Brew Aria valve is adjustable and able to vary the levels of air and effervescence infused into cold brew, all the way down to no bubbles at all. The net result: illy Cold Brew Aria is the only system that can produce either effervescent or regular cold brew with only one tap handle and one coffee source, saving yet more precious real state behind the bar, in the kitchen or wherever else cold brew can be offered on-premise.

New Bag-in-a-Box Adds Consistency, Convenience and Compactness

The ultimate combination for cafes, restaurants, hotels and every place else that aims to delight discerning coffee lovers is the illy Cold Brew Aria system paired with illy’s other new innovation: Bag-in-a-Box. This five-liter soft package, packaged in a compact box, is filled with perfectly-prepared illy cold brew, eliminating the need for baristas and other staff to manage and monitor up to 12 hours of preparation.

Designed for either tap or non-tap dispensing, when paired with a tap, illy Bag-in-a-Box Cold Brew eliminates the need for delivery and storage of heavy, space-consuming kegs. Bag-in-a-Box cold brew remains stable during nine months of ambient storage time and can be served for up to five days once the packaging is opened. At the core of this innovation is illy’s long history of leveraging technology to enhance and delight coffee lovers with the best quality coffee, which can be seen at many moments in the company’s 86 years history, such as inventing pressurized packing in 1934, and the 1970s, when illy industrialized the single-serve coffee format with ESE paper pods: ideally pre-measured, -ground and -tamped, espresso dose that fit into any espresso machine and produced an optimal beverage without years of barista training, and that remain on the market today.

The Right System at the Right Time

illy Cold Brew Aria arrives at a time when U.S. cold coffee sales are both booming and increasingly the format of choice for today’s younger, tougher to please, more on-the-go coffee consumers. Sixty-six percent of U.S. millennials regularly drink cold coffee on a year-round basis compared to 34 percent of Generation X coffee drinkers, according to Mintel Menu Insights.

The system was designed with minimal internal lines, making maintenance quick and simple. Just a five-minute daily soaking of the spout, and weekly flushing of lines, are required.

The illy Cold Brew Aria Cold Brew system is available for use by qualified illy accounts with certain volume commitments, and is currently operating in all San Francisco illy Caffè locations. The system can also be retrofitted to existing tap systems to immediately enhance product quality.

David Chipperfield redesigns the classic Moka espresso maker for Alessi

David Chipperfield Redesigns the Classic Moka Espresso Maker for Alessi

British architect David Chipperfield has offered his take on the classic Italian coffee maker invented by Alfonso Bialetti in the 1930s. Chipperfield’s Moka is a contemporary upgrade to the Moka Express, one of the most successful products to come out of Italy following the second world war. Like the […]

David Chipperfield redesigns the classic Moka espresso maker for AlessiDavid Chipperfield redesigns the classic Moka espresso maker for Alessi

British architect David Chipperfield has offered his take on the classic Italian coffee maker invented by Alfonso Bialetti in the 1930s.

Chipperfield’s Moka is a contemporary upgrade to the Moka Express, one of the most successful products to come out of Italy following the second world war.

Like the original, this espresso maker is made from die-cast aluminium and feature a distinctive faceted body. But it has a simple profile, with a flat lid and a fuss-free handle.

Italian design brand Alessi first revealed the design at the Maison&Objet homeware fair in Paris earlier this year but it will officially launched in Milan this month.

Bialetti was the maternal grandfather of Alessi founder Alberto Alessi. He developed his Moka in 1931, although it didn’t become a commercial success until more than a decade later, when his son Renato pushed it out to the international market.

The innovative design brews coffee by using steam to push boiling water through ground coffee.

Alberto Alessi describes the product as one of the earlier examples of Italian design.

He attributes its success to a number of factors – not only was it more efficient than using a pan, but also affordable to the masses. Plus, in the economic boom after the war, it benefited hugely from a widespread advertising campaign.

“The fact is, the Moka left its mark on the public, especially but not only in Italy, an effect that still lasts today,” wrote Alessi in an article for the brand’s magazine. “It formalised a new domestic ritual that was contemporary and intimate.”

Chipperfield is the latest in a series of prolific designers invited by Alessi to reinterpret the classic espresso maker, including Richard Sapper, Pierro Lissoni, Michael Graves, Michele De Lucchi and Aldo Rossi.

The architect said he was careful not to mess with the “familiar and generic” qualities of the object.

“How amazing that this complex and well-performing object has become readable and comprehensible, a machine that needs no instructions and no invitation to be part of domestic life,” he said.

“Its familiarity and its character are defined not only by its friendly silhouette but its soft grey materiality, the agreeable grinding noise that accompanies the simple mechanical screwing and unscrewing of its body.”

Chipperfield’s Moka is available in three sizes, ranging from 11 to 18 centimetres in height. It comes in a box featuring bold yellow and blue graphics, which form part of the product’s visual identity.

The coffee maker forms part of Alessi‘s SS19 collection, which will be on show at the Salone del Mobile in Milan from 9 to 14 April 2019.David Chipperfield redesigns the classic Moka espresso maker for Alessi

Americans are drinking more “gourmet” coffee. This doesn’t mean they’re drinking great coffee.

Americans are Drinking More “Gourmet” Coffee – Does it Mean They’re Drinking Great Coffee?

Coffee drinking preferences and habits among Americans have shifted towards quality in the last years, but not enough. Even though most people know what cold brew is, they haven’t tried it yet. Drip coffee, however, has dropped in preferences 16% since 2012, which is great. And finally, Americans figured out that convenient single serve coffee makers are good, but brew bad coffee.

Americans are drinking more “gourmet” coffee. This doesn’t mean they’re drinking great coffee.Americans are drinking more “gourmet” coffee. This doesn’t mean they’re drinking great coffee.

The National Coffee Association USA recently dropped its annual survey results, and, as usual, there’s a wealth of information to sift through to better understand the state of coffee drinking in America. The quick take: While overall coffee consumption remains steady, more Americans are turning to gourmet beans.

Yep, it seems America is becoming a coffee-snob country. Or something close to it.

Every year since 1950, the NCA has commissioned a survey to learn about the nation’s coffee habits. This year’s online survey was collected in mid- to late-January and included 2,815 respondents, ages 18 and older, who had consumed a beverage other than tap water the previous day. (You don’t actually have to drink coffee to take part in the survey.) The data was then weighted on age, gender, region and ethnicity to reflect the U.S. population, based on the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2016 current population survey. In short, it aims to be authoritative.

According to this year’s finding, coffee remains the No. 1 drink: Sixty-three percent of the respondents said they drank a coffee beverage (drip coffee, espresso, latte, cold brew, Unicorn Frappuccino, etc.) the previous day, a click down from 64 percent in 2018. (By the way, the second-most consumed beverage was unflavored bottled water, which might help explain the Great Pacific Garbage Patch.) Of those coffee drinkers, 61 percent said they had knocked back a “gourmet” cup of joe. This, according to the NCA, is the first time gourmet coffee has crossed the 60 percent threshold. Gourmet coffee drinkers clocked in at 48 percent in 2015 and rose to 58 percent last year.

If you ask the NCA how it defines the term “gourmet,” things get really wonky, really fast.

A spokesman says it has a lot to do with green, unroasted coffee beans: They must have “no more than 8 full defects in 300 grams,” Jordan Campbell said in an email. The coffee “also must possess at least one distinctive attribute in the body, flavor, aroma or acidity.” Campbell also notes that the Specialty Coffee Association labels “specialty coffee” anything with a cupping score of 80 or above (based on a 100-point scale).

But as Chris Vigilante pointed out in a phone call, you can have a lot of variation within those “gourmet” parameters. He would know. He’s the founder of Vigilante Coffee Co., the Hyattsville, Md.-based roaster and coffee shop. Vigilante said his company doesn’t buy any coffee beans with a cupping score below 85. Such beans drop under the standards he has set. “Eighty-seven is the breaking point,” Vigilante says. “That’s when you know it’s really, really good.”

One other factor to consider in America’s apparent turn toward gourmet coffee: The NCA study includes ready-to-drink coffee in this category. “Think: The Starbucks can you might buy in the supermarket,” Campbell says.

In other words, most American coffee drinkers are not sipping the stuff brewed with glass siphons, using the most expensive beans in the world. They might still be sucking down Starbucks from a can.

“The lines haven’t been defined clearly in the specialty sector,” Vigilante tells me. “I think it’s still super-new to the coffee world.”

Other takeaways from the 2019 survey:

African Americans embrace gourmet coffee. Gourmet coffee drinking is up 7 percent among African Americans compared to last year’s survey. Asian Americans top the list of gourmet coffee drinkers at 47 percent, followed by Hispanic Americans at 46 percent, African Americans at 40 percent and Caucasian Americans at 39 percent. African Americans have embraced “non-espresso” beverages, including frozen blended drinks, cold brew and nitro coffee.

Coffee drinking skews older. Seventy-two percent of those polled ages 60 and older drank coffee the previous day. Compare that with respondents ages 18 to 24: Only 47 percent said they had some form of coffee. Overall, the survey indicates that coffee drinking increases as Americans get older.

Drip coffee is losing ground. This year, 45 percent of the respondents said they had sipped coffee brewed in a drip machine the previous day. In 2012, the percentage was 61 percent, a drop of 16 points. “This represents a gradual but fundamental shift in the American coffee landscape,” the survey notes.

Incidentally, single-cup brewers, such as the pod-based Keurig, are the second-most popular brewing method. Twenty-seven percent of those polled said they used these machines the previous day, 8 points higher than in 2012.

People know cold brew; they just don’t drink it. Nearly 80 percent of respondents said they were aware of cold brew coffee, but only 20 percent drank it regularly or occasionally. As the survey notes, “there is a large opportunity to convert those who are aware of cold brew but not currently drinking.” The survey also points out, somewhat academically, that the percentage of cold-brew drinkers might be larger if the question were asked during warmer months, instead of in January.

We’re largely satisfied with our workplace coffee. Nearly 85 percent were “very satisfied” or “somewhat satisfied” with the coffee options at their place of employment. But the survey points out that there’s evidence workers are growing disenchanted with their single-cup-brewed coffee. Only 43 percent were “very satisfied” this year with the coffee from Keurig machines and the like, down 14 points from 2015.

The pod coffee revolt has started.

Suze Orman: Stop buying coffee and you could be a millionaire

Stop Buying Coffee and You Could Be a Millionaire

Stop Buying coffee, we absolutely agree with that. Brew it at home and not only you will save a lot of money, but you will enjoy your little new hobby. There is a satisfaction that you get when you do things yourself, and making coffee is probably one of the most rewarding activities. When you nail that perfect cup that you never drunk at Starbucks, you will feel great.

What’s your favorite coffee brewing method? You don’t have one? Check Coffee Brewing Methods for tutorials on how to prepare the stuff at home. Read the article below to get your motivation.

Suze Orman: Stop buying coffee and you could be a millionaireSuze Orman: Stop buying coffee and you could be a millionaire

There are two types of people in this world: Those who enjoy a cup of coffee while sitting in a cafe or while on the go and don’t mind paying for this daily convenience, and those who are convinced that this expenditure is keeping you from knowing true wealth.

The latter are the people who use on using “latte calculators” to add up the amount of Starbucks lattes you spend in a year and shoving it in your face. Try Googling, “I never buy coffee.”

Financial guru Suze Orman has joined the anti-coffee club in a big way. She wouldn’t buy a cup of coffee anywhere, the multi-millionaire tells CNBC Make It. Moreover, she says, a daily coffee habit is the potential waste of a million dollars.

“You go in every single day and you spend a dollar to three dollars,” she chides. Well, more than that, in some cities!

Orman goes on to say that a daily coffee habit is approximately $100 a month, and $100 a month in a Roth IRA over 40 years is a million dollars. We’ll trust her math on that one.

And so, “You are peeing a million dollars down the drain after you are drinking that coffee.”

Yes, Suzie, we are. But boy, do we love our daily coffee ritual – the very best part of a morning routine. Because of course, you’re not always paying for the coffee. Sometimes you’re paying for the convenience, or for a place to site on your way from here to there, or for a few moments alone in the middle of the city.

So what would you rather have at retirement: having enjoyed the many pleasure of a million coffees, or a million dollars? Some days, it’s a toss-up.

‘It took a lot of tasting horrible things,’ but Sumner barista is the best in the USA

U.S. Barista Champion – It Took a Lot of Tasting Horrible Drinks

Sam Spillman loves coffee. Like many people, she starts her day with it, leaving early from home in Seattle to travel to work in Sumner. Because coffee isn’t just her passion — it’s her job. Spillman is the coffee education specialist for Dillanos Coffee Roasters , meaning she gets […]

‘It took a lot of tasting horrible things,’ but Sumner barista is the best in the USA

Sam Spillman loves coffee.

Like many people, she starts her day with it, leaving early from home in Seattle to travel to work in Sumner.

Because coffee isn’t just her passion — it’s her job.‘It took a lot of tasting horrible things,’ but Sumner barista is the best in the USA

Spillman is the coffee education specialist for Dillanos Coffee Roasters, meaning she gets to experiment with coffee and then train clients how to work with it.

“I fell in love with coffee in the beginning because of community,” the 26-year-old barista said. “I just loved being where people were at, and I felt like coffee always brought people together.”

On March 17, Spillman was nationally recognized for her expertise when she won first place at the U.S. Barista Championships in Kansas City, Missouri.

At the competition, which is part of the larger U.S. Coffee Championships, baristas from all over the country have 15 minutes to serve 12 drinks: four espressos, four cappuccinos or milk beverages, and four signature beverages to a panel of judges.

Four judges score on taste, which is 47 percent of the overall score, while two others follow contestants as they make their coffee, watching for technique.

“They’re watching to be sure you don’t spill a lot of coffee. They’re making sure you start your shots as soon as you lock in your portafilters. They’re making sure everything is clean and set up,” Spillman said.

It’s OK to spill, as long as you clean it up, Spillman said. Points are deducted for exceeding time limits.

“A point is a lot, because last year I missed finals by half a point,” Spillman said. She’s been competing for five years.

The baristas also are talking during their so-called “routines,” sharing a story about coffee. Spillman spent months rehearsing, down to each movement.

Spillman’s story took the judges back to the beginning of the coffee process: the farm.

In preparation for the competition, she took a trip to La Palma Y El Tucan, a coffee farm in Colombia.

In preparation for the competition, she took a trip to La Palma Y El Tucan, a coffee farm in Colombia.

“This experience changed everything for me,” Spillman said of the August trip.

In Colombia, she met farmers who have been hand-picking coffee beans their entire lives. She saw how one arabica coffee tree only makes about a pound of coffee in one year, and of that, many beans get thrown out for quality reasons.

It gave her new perspective, Spillman said.

“We need to tell that story better,” Spillman told The Herald in an interview March 25. “As coffee professionals, we’re trying to grow this industry.

“If we can focus on where it came from and focus on what’s important with coffee … I think we’re moving in the right direction.”

The experience also inspired Spillman’s signature drink. She used passion fruit juice, coconut water and sugar to create a passion fruit sipping vinegar and combined it with a lychee-infused soda water.

To top it off, she created an orchid aromatic fog — “There’s so much science that goes into coffee,” Spillman said — which she poured over the beverage for scent.

The coffee tasted like watermelon, passion fruit and grapefruit.

“It was pretty tasty. It was fun. It took a lot of tasting horrible things, though, to try to figure it out,” Spillman said about the drink.

It paid off.

Spillman was the only barista to get a score above 600 points, totaling 618 and securing her title of U.S. Barista Champion.

“That was a big surprise,” she said.

Spillman is the first woman to place first in the U.S. Barista Championships since 2014. She said she couldn’t do it without the support of her husband, Brian, her coach, 2017 Barista Champion Kyle Ramage, and her team at Dillanos.

She will now compete in the World Coffee Championships, an international competition held in Boston in April.

David Morris, Co-CEO of Dillanos, said Spillman had been “training like an Olympic athlete” to prepare for the competition and is glad “the world is exposed to Samantha and her wonderful and infectious attitude.”

Spillman started her career as a barista when she was 17 in her hometown of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. She moved to Seattle when she was 18, where she started working under the guidance of 2014 Barista Champion Laila Ghambari.

Spillman attended Seattle Pacific University and earned her degree in business and marketing. She’s been working for Dillanos for two years.

In sharing her experience, Spillman hopes people are thoughtful when they order their next cup of coffee.

“Being a barista is a lot of hard work,” she said. “You’re moving quickly, and you’re pumping out drinks, and you’re engaging and talking, and it’s a lot of hard work.”

The grain-free, nut-free, gluten-free flour alternative you didn't know existed

Coffee Flour – Grain-free, Nut-free, Gluten-free, and Slightly Caffeinated

Alternative flours are very popular now, as people try new diets like gluten-free, ketogenic and paleo. For those trying to cook and eat healthier, there is a new alternative to almond flour, coconut flour, and other gluten-free flours. That is coffee flour. If you want to buy a bag to try it out Amazon has it here: coffee flour.

The grain-free, nut-free, gluten-free flour alternative you didn’t know existedThe grain-free, nut-free, gluten-free flour alternative you didn\'t know existed

Alternative flours have been rising in popularity in light of diets like gluten-free, ketogenic and paleo. They work baking wonders for those who have dietary restrictions or are simply trying to cook and eat a little healthier.

Almond flour, coconut flour, and gluten-free flour mixes are some of the most popular options that you can now find in most grocery stores and see listed in many recipes. Coffee flour, however, is a lesser-known alternative flour option that might just slowly slide to the top of the alt-flour pack.

Coffee flour is derived from the coffee cherry plant, the same plant that coffee beans are harvested from. Usually, the coffee fruit is discarded, but after it was discovered that these leftovers could become a powerful ingredient in the world of baking, coffee flour emerged, Popsugar reports.

The flour is made from just the pulp of the coffee cherry, rather than the skin and the pulp. It has no fat content at all and boasts a roasted flavor that has been described as incredible.

Unlike many alternative and gluten-free flours on the market, coffee flour is grain-free and nut-free, which makes it perfect for someone following a Paleo diet. Also, a serving of coffee flour contains seven grams of carbohydrates, but six of those are from dietary fiber, making it an ideal choice for a low-carb dieter, too.

Gram for gram, some coffee flour products have been reported to have more iron than fresh spinach; more fiber than whole grain wheat flour; more antioxidants than pomegranate; more protein than fresh kale; more potassium than a banana; and less fat than coconut flour, Epicurious reports.

And while it’s beneficial for your health, it’s also good for the environment. “Coffee flour is a highly sustainable product since it’s a new use for the pulp leftover from the production and growth of coffee beans,” Jackie London, nutrition director of the Good Housekeeping Institute, told Popsugar.

As an added perk for caffeine addicts, coffee flour does contain caffeine, but it’s only about as much as is in dark chocolate (roughly 12 milligrams per ounce, compared to about 95 milligrams per ounce in coffee), Food52 reports. As for its flavor, it reportedly adds a slight graininess to baked goods with a slight nutty flavor some might describe as fig-reminiscent.

As for what to use coffee flour for, it pairs really well with chocolate-y flavored baked goods like brownies or cookies. If you want to get REALLY healthy with your baked goods, this Beet Cake made with coffee flour is perfect for you.

Canadian Barista and Coffee Academy Opens in Calgary, Alberta

CALGARY, Alberta, March 25, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Canadian Barista and Coffee Academy (CBCA), well known for its active role in the Canadian specialty coffee community and industry since 2001, announces the opening of a new campus in Calgary, Alberta. CBCA was the first coffee school in Canada devoted […]

Canadian Barista and Coffee Academy Opens in Calgary, Alberta

CALGARY, Alberta, March 25, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Canadian Barista and Coffee Academy (CBCA), well known for its active role in the Canadian specialty coffee community and industry since 2001, announces the opening of a new campus in Calgary, Alberta.

CBCA was the first coffee school in Canada devoted to coffee business education and hands-on barista training. With 2 established campuses in Toronto and Vancouver the CBCA will be bringing that long history, experience and expertise to Calgary.

The first courses in Calgary will be held May 17 through May 20.

Students will learn in a training lab and classroom setting the fundamentals of how to open a successful coffee business and barista training techniques.

Students will learn in a training lab and classroom setting the fundamentals of how to open a successful coffee business and barista training techniques.

Classes include a 4-day intensive course for existing businesses and new startups, hands-on for baristas, and specially designed seminars for private in-cafe trainings. Roasting Classes are available at our Vancouver Campus and soon to be at our Toronto and Calgary Campuses.

The Academy’s Instructors have over 35 years of combined experience in the Canadian and U.S. specialty coffee markets.

The CBCA are the founders of the official Canadian National and Regional Barista Competitions and represented Canada as the National Sanctioned Body at the World Barista Championships for over a decade.

Visit https://canadianbaristaacademy.com for current class schedules, pricing and information.

Contact: Jamie van Dam for Canadian Barista & Coffee Academy
Phone: Calgary 587-997-4584 | Vancouver 604-409-3249 | Toronto 437-889-9457
Email: 
Website: https://canadianbaristaacademy.com/