What does coffee mean to you? A shot of energy to get you going in the morning? A little treat on your way to do some shopping? A mid-morning pick-me-up? A cup of coffee is all this and more. How much thought do you give to where your coffee comes from? For us here at Bean & Bud, the perfect cup of coffee is the end of a journey. It’s the result of many people’s care, hard work and passion. Which is why we never treat is as ‘just a coffee’.
A few years ago, before opening Bean & Bud, I spent 6 years working with coffee and tea growers. I sat in many meetings with these growers where they explained how much work goes into producing the crops of which they are rightly so proud. These men and women are experts in cultivation, harvesting, processing and environmental impact of their crop. Every day is spent planting, tending, picking and transporting this most precious of commodities.
We work with a handful of the best roasters in the UK and sometimes in Europe. Again, these roasters take their time to perfect the best roast profiles for each varietal or origin of bean, to produce a perfect cup. An African coffee tastes vastly different from a Central American coffee, a washed coffee from a natural coffee. Our roast partners do lots of experimenting and cupping with each coffee to ensure that they have brought out the best flavours.
Then the coffee arrives with us at Bean & Bud. The first thing we do when the coffee is unpacked is to check that the coffee has arrived safely and in good condition. Then the coffee is placed in our stock room to ‘rest’. The perfect time to start using a coffee can be from 7-10 days from roast, depending on many variables such as origin, process etc. As we change our coffees every week or so, we have the important job of ensuring that each batch of coffee is perfectly rested and ready to go on the bar. Finally, we are ready to do our own profiling to ensure that we use the best brew recipe and profile in extracting the espresso shot, to ensure that our customers get the very best shot of coffee every time. All our baristas are trained to the highest standards and their coffees are not sent out to customers until they are the best we can produce. We never send out a shot that we are not 100% happy with.
So, there in brief is part of the journey that your coffee takes to get to you. From grower to importer, from roaster to barista, the coffee goes through many hands. We all treat the coffee with the respect it deserves – we owe it to everyone along that chain. We hope you do too. Enjoy!