...unless you care about the variables, that is. Controlling the variables is what makes coffee an art form; it’s all about intentionality.
Coffee has been a consuming passion of mine for a decade. The more I learn about the industry, the more I realize there is to discover. My background in international development, which has taken me overseas numerous times has increased my passion for working with famers and seeing them receive fair payment for their product and get the recognition they deserve. Spending time with tea famers in Nepal and coffee farmers in Mexico and Panama and elsewhere - seeing their efforts and hard work first hand, has fuelled my desire for work with coffee. Through it all I have come to realize the importance of intentionality during the entire coffee production process, from origin to cup.
Intentionality in controlling the variables comes down to ensuring quality at every step in the coffee-making process. Variables exist to be controlled. Fond in every stage of the process, they determine the very nature of the end product.
The variables include:
- Farming (water, temperature, shade, altitude – some of the finest coffees grow at altitudes between 1,000-2,000)
- Processing (washed, semi-washed, natural dry process – quality control)
- Roasting (length of roasting time, heat source, temperature, and airflow)
- Extraction (size of dose, grind, water temperature, and agitation)
It’s fascinating to think of all the work and skill that goes into one cup of coffee. Understanding the entirety of the process has brought me to appreciate and respect those working in the industry, and increased my personal standards of excellence when it comes to roasting and being a barista.
As baristas we pride ourselves on carrying that same quality into every cup.