Around here, coffee is one of the essential foodstuffs. The very first job of the morning is to make a pot to satisfy the coffee zombies who roam the flat before the arrival of their palliative cup. We were therefore fascinated by a trip to the London Coffee Festival the other week, where we were exposed to the full range of geekery that coffee can promote. Not wearing check shirts and beanie hats, we did feel slightly out of place, but as one who does have a hankering after kit of all forms, I did find the tussle between equipment and the barista’s skill when making coffee very interesting. The influx of capsule machines into Michelin starred restaurants being one example of where a desire for consistency beats artisanal, hands-on production. We were also interested in the espresso machines that can vary both temperature and pressure as the shot is drawn, resulting in drinks with significantly different flavours despite using the same coffee.
The two things that we did come away from the show with were a) an appreciation that a good espresso can be smooth and flavourful, and doesn’t necessarily need oodles of sugar to take away the bitterness, and b) a pour-over cone: we were reminded of the clarity of flavour that comes from this, the most simple of methods to make coffee, and so chose a simple white china cone, and have been enjoying the results since.
When we’re out and about and in need of a coffee fix, the obvious choice, and frequently the most handy, is the nearest Starbucks. But now, when we go, there is a choice of coffees: as well as the regular blends, Starbucks are now also offering an Origin Espresso; in particular Guatemala Antigua. This coffee is made from beans harvested at the Santa Clara (Guatemala) farm where pickers are summoned to an area where the beans are ready to pick by the sound of a horn, meaning that the cherries are harvested at their peak.
When we did a comparative taste test between the standard and the Origin Espresso, we found it to be more rounded than the standard espresso, so if that’s what you look for in your coffee, why not give it a go?
This is a sponsored post.