Coffee cupping is a method to compare the different characteristics of a coffee bean. Cupping lets us compare different coffees against each other to evaluate the uniqueness between them. This information can give us a better understanding of each different region and their basic tastes.
Having a coffee cupping party at home is a great way to socialize and enjoy coffee while evaluating and sharing thoughts on the different blends. It can be fun and a sense of adventure discovering flavors and nuances you never thought existed in a cup of coffee.
Gather some coffee lovers together with a small cupping supply and let the fun begin.
Coffee cupping is not difficult and will take some practice and patience but the reward will give you invaluable knowledge about coffee.
Your cupping supply will consist of the following :
1. Fresh filtered water, not distilled or softened.
2. A coffee scoop that holds 2 tablespoons.
3. Small cupping cups that hold 5 ounces each
(3 for each sample; if cupping 3 coffees you will need 9).
4. Small rectangle plastic trays to hold beans; 1 for each coffee.
5. Cupping spoons that are deep for holding samples and slurping.
6. Whole Bean Coffee; enough for 3 cups each-six tablespoons.
? Bring water to rolling boil and let stand.
? Put your cups on the table in 3 groups of 3 each.
? Using your scoop measure 1 scoop of beans per cup.
? Grind coffee beans to a fine consistency and put in cup.
Make sure to grind each coffee to the same fineness and clean the grinder after each grinding.
Start by sniffing each of the coffee samples then begin pouring water just off the boiling point on the grounds. Allow the coffee to steep for 3 to 4 minutes. Using your spoon gently break the crust and take time to smell the coffee at this point. Once the crust is broken gently stir the coffee to allow some of the grounds to sink. Any left on top should be scooped out and thrown away.
After cooling slightly start slurping the coffee from the spoon. Let it splash over your entire palate letting your taste buds experience and acknowledge each flavor. It's fun to see how many funny sounds you can make while slurping.
You could even make a game of it to see who can make the funniest sounds. Hold the coffee in your mouth without swallowing and swish it around and begin to realize all the different taste sensations. At this point, spit the coffee out and begin sharing your experience and thoughts with the rest of the group. There are no right or wrongs just opinions.
For many beginners evaluating coffee with other coffee lovers will open your eyes and your taste buds to flavors in coffee that you might have missed. It is a fun way to share a new understanding and appreciation for coffee cupping and enjoy it all at the same time.
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