This morning the worlds of fine wine and Specialty coffee came together in a sensory experiment. Anna Clark is a Key-Account-Manager for the brilliant Majestic Wine, studying for her WSET Diploma, and wanted to develop her experience of the ‘tertiary flavours’ that develop in aged wines. She understood that these were often available in Specialty coffees so got in touch with us. I prepared a range of freshly hand-roasted single origins from around the world on the cupping table, and we set to work.
Parallels between coffee and wine
It was a real pleasure for me to spend some time discussing the widely overlooked parallels between wine and coffee. Anna hadn’t cupped coffee before, but her incredible knowledge of wine gave me a super new perspective of the coffees on the table.
Jamaica Blue Mountain Coffee
I offered Anna a sneak taste of our new Phoenix limited-edition Midnight Blue roast, which will be available to order from beginning of November. Her evaluation was: Intense aroma with a combination of Brazil nut, blackcurrant leaf and white pepper flavour notes. A silky smooth honey body with a lingering vanilla aftertaste. I’ll take that!
‘Tim rightly pointed out that we spend good money, time and interest when enjoying a meal on the food and the wine, why should we neglect the importance or indeed marvel of what coffee can offer to the our overall experience.
The similarities with wine are significant, as is the diligent approach needed towards systematic tasting. In fact, coffee requires an extra level of dedication found in its preparation that goes way beyond simply opening a bottle. Meticulous accuracy in weight, water temperature, movement of the crust and release of aromas. It’s a skilled exercise. Tim was very patient with my complete ignorance and naivety towards the tasting exercise, a diligent tutor and evidently extremely passionate about the subject which is so refreshing.
The journey coffee takes from the point of origin right through to the point of consumption clearly provides individuality and character definition, so much effort and art goes in to its creation. This definitely should no longer be overlooked.
I wholeheartedly support and applaud Tim’s approach to platforming what is outstanding quality.’