A good cup of coffee depends on several factors that affects its overall taste and look. These factors range from the kind of beans used to how long the beans were subjected to roasting. Coffee, like other manufactured products in the world, are subjected to a particular quality taste test.
Coffee cupping is a taste test done by “cuppers.” The cuppers or professional master tasters taste freshly brewed coffee at the factory and determine every individual brew’s qualities. The cupper’s incredible taste for coffee allows them to tell specific stories about the brew such as from which region they were made and what brewing method was used.
Each individual cup is examined with these major criteria:
The aroma refers to the overall smell or the scent of the coffee. It is used to assist in evaluating the coffee’s flavor. Contrary to popular belief, the coffee’s scent does not entirely determine its whole taste. The coffee’s aroma is developed through the roasting process.
Examples of coffee aroma include: fruity, earthy and caramel-like.
Acidity refers to the sensation of dryness one feels in the back and under the edges of the mouth. The amount of acidity in coffee is determined by the degree the coffee is roasted, the type of roaster and the brewing method.
This particular trait should not be confused as a negative characteristic. It is this particular attribute that gives coffee its lively taste.
The body refers to the overall feel of the coffee in your mouth. Descriptions of this particular criterion is often related to the texture or heaviness of a particular brew and is done by allowing the coffee to rest on the tongue and by rubbing the tongue against the roof of the mouth. The degree of roasting is pointed out as the substantial cause that determines the coffee’s body.
The flavor is the entire perception of the three characteristics seen above. A coffee’s flavor is often grouped into three traits: rich (full-bodied), balanced (the taste does not empower the other) and complex (multi-flavored). Examples of famous coffee flavors include: mild, tangy and piquant.
The sensation that is experienced after a coffee is swallowed is called the aftertaste. It is the lingering remnant of the coffee taste which changes over a period of time. An aftertaste is determined at the period of time from the initial aromatic sensation on the back of the throat to the loss of this specific sensation.
Sophie White is a foodie blogger based in Australia. She is passionate about all things food-related and is an accomplished home cook herself. With a tongue for all dishes local and international, she leads the online marketing campaign for the Australian coffee brand Coffee Galleria.