A real coffee lover might boast that they can tell the origin of the coffee that they are drinking just by smelling its aroma and taking a sip at it. That is actually a professional practice similar to that of wine tasters. This practice known as cupping and it is done by coffee experts all over the world for grading and classifying the coffee that they are getting.
It is not an easy thing to learn how to cup coffee. It takes years and years of practice in order to perfect the art and build up enough knowledge that can allow you to classify any coffee type that you might try. But if you a true coffee connoisseur then this is a skill that you might certainly aspire to achieve some day.
How to Cup Coffee- As I have mentioned cupping is not the easiest thing to do in the world. You need to have a lot of experience before you are going to be able to classify all the types of coffee that you might encounter. If you want to practice learning this skill then here are some steps that you should try out:
1. Cupping starts even before the beans are roasted. As a professional cupper you must check the beans for their size and general appearance and inspect their general condition.
2. The beans are then roasted according to standard procedure and afterwards you have to inspect the beans again. How do they compare with the other roasted beans that you have seen in the past? If the beans are not fully developed it should show right away after roasting. Have the beans ground.
3. You can then place a teaspoonful of coffee on some cups and then pour hot water on it.
4. Observe how the coffee is going to react once the water has been added. The fine ground should rise to the top and should form foam like crust.
5. You need to test the wet smell of the coffee that you have chosen. Using a small spoon you need to break through the crust of foam and then let the aroma of the drink reach you. If you are cupping several coffee type that is the best time for you to compare them with each other. Which one has more solid aroma?
6. Don’t taste the coffee while it is very hot. That can scald your tongue which can limit its function. When you feel that the coffee temperature has gone down then you can start with the actual testing.
7. Have a cup water beside where you can rinse the teaspoon before using it again. You can spit out the coffee after you have
tasted it so you do not want to spit out right there after tasting a sample from one coffee type so it does not get mixed with other samples.
8. Make sure that you take note of all the info that you get on your coffee samples.
These are just some of the steps followed by those who consider themselves as experts when it comes to coffee.