The 3 Keys to the Best Tasting Coffee is one of our most foundational pieces of coffee education since it defines what it takes to make the best possible cups …
Definition of Merchants’ 3+ Keys to the Best Tasting Coffee
- Term that describes the most basic and critical elements required to produce the best-tasting cups of coffee.
Related: An educational concept developed by Merchants of Green Coffee, first published in printed pamphlets in the early 2000s after many years of coffee quality research, analysis and experimental coffee brewing in a professional context, and intended as one of the most important pieces of information for coffee consumers.
- Related: A fourth key was eventually added to embrace the concept of “community” as having an impact on coffee’s overall quality. This key, referred to as “Good Company”, has a double meaning: a) It refers to a positive personal coffee experience with another person/other people, and b) It refers to the urgent, and global need for coffee corporations (big and small) to be “good” by working together to offer coffee consumers more sustainable and transparent supply chains that have a positive impact on both people and the planet, and inevitably improve the quality of the coffee.
The 3+ Keys to the Best-Tasting Coffee
#1 Key – The Bean
The first key to great coffee is the Quality of the Green Bean.
The best cup of coffee starts with the best beans, and the best beans are high-elevation; arabica fairly traded and grown organically. Coffee production that includes innovations such as, restorative agriculture, advanced sorting and processing equipment, and better packaging/storage facilities for export, also play a role in increasing a coffee’s overall quality.
#2 Key – The Roast
The second key to great coffee is the Freshness of the Roast.
For coffee to be considered truly fresh, it must be consumed within 5 to 7 days (at most!) after roasting; within 3 hours of grinding; and within 15 minutes of brewing. (More on coffee freshness)
#3 Key – The Brew
The third key to great coffee is Proper Brewing.
Proper coffee brewing requires water just off the boil; 90°C-98°C/195°F-205°F. This temperature is necessary to extract the full range of flavours from freshly roasted and freshly ground coffee. The most important aspect of the brewing process is the brewer’s understanding of and ability to execute the proper temperature and extraction time.
#4 Key – Good Company
The fourth key is a special key that involves people …
It’s about paying tribute to the fact that the original roots of coffee culture (Ethiopia) saw coffee as a special ceremony that was shared in the company of friends, family and others we genuinely care about. From a scientific sensory perspective, the very act of sharing coffee with friends or loved ones can actually make it taste better! On a more individual level, this key can be interpreted as choosing a good company to buy beans from. Supporting existing good companies ultimately works its way to also improving the fruits of its labour (those amazing coffee cherries). “Good Company” is also about how good (coffee) companies need one another to survive and thrive. No one company can survive alone, and so there is a need to align in order to make coffee better now and in the future.
Source: Information collected and summarized by Merchants of Green Coffee Inc. from our own corporate documents.
Our most recent posts related to Merchants’ 3+ Keys to the Best Tasting Coffee:
Merchants’ 3 Keys to The Best Tasting CoffeePosted on — 1 Comment
There are three critical keys to making the best tasting coffee, regardless of what coffee camp you belong to. As with fine wine, the quality of the coffee begins with the quality of the fruit …