Worldwide, over one billion people drink coffee every day. An average of 2.25 billion cups are consumed each day. According to research, the country sipping the most coffee is Finland, with a whopping average of four cups per day consumed per person. Norway, Denmark, Indonesia, Iceland, The Netherlands, Sweden, Brazil, Switzerland, Columbia, Brazil, Ethiopia and Vietnam are also top of the list among coffee-loving countries.
The average American spends at least $1000 every year, if not more, on this beloved beverage. And in recent years, the cultural space created around this drink has been ever-expanding, with people starting online polls debating which type of coffee is best or making lists of the best books to read and playlists to listen to in coffee shops. Many people associate coffee with a sense of quiet and calm, and it’s not far-fetched to see a lot of students or office employees bringing their laptops and papers into a café and working there. When you consider it, it becomes easy to notice how coffee is more than just a drink.
If you’re also a fan of the beverage, you can take it a step further and become a veritable coffee connoisseur. It is a helpful pursuit that’ll help you make better choices about the coffee you buy, order, brew and drink, and it can also become a lucrative career.
About the beans
To become a veritable coffee aficionado, the first thing you need to do is familiarize yourself with the different types of coffee beans. For the untrained eye – and taste buds – they’re all more or less the same. However, an expert is able to differentiate between them just by how they smell. While there are well over 120 varieties of coffee plants, and each produces another type of bean, there are four significant types you must be aware of:
- Arabica: Perhaps the most popular coffee beans in the world, Arabica provides your drink with a softer, sweeter taste than the other varieties. Arabica grows in places that have both high elevations – with the ideal altitudes being anywhere between 500 and 2500 meters – as well as considerable amounts of rain, such as Brazil. Due to their flavor profile, Arabica beans are typically used in iced coffee. Connoisseurs are able to detect subtle hints of fruits, florals, nuts and even chocolate in this bean variety.
- Robusta: The preferred choice for espressos and espresso-based drinks like latte and cappuccino, Robusta beans can produce a better foamy layer than all other coffee bean varieties. The flavor is generally bitter, and depending on cultivation, some varieties have a strong aftertaste resembling peanuts. Due to the simpler acidity, you might also distinguish burnt rubber or wood tones.
- Excelsa: The rarest type of coffee bean, Excelsa is grown mainly by cultivars in Southeast Asia. The taste is somehow tart, and there are fruit undertones you might feel depending on the brew. Although the beans amount for only a small portion of worldwide coffee consumption, you must still be aware of their existence and taste if you want to possess all the coffee know-how.
- Liberica: Prevalent in the Philippines, Malaysia and Indonesia, these coffee beans are relatively rare in Europe and America. If you’re ever a tourist in one of the countries producing them in large quantities, it would be a pity to fail to try them. They’re known to have a specific woodsy flavor, with undertones that are a mix of bitter, spicy and chocolatey. Some say that Liberica is an acquired taste, while others claim that you either love or hate it.
Don’t shun variety
The best kind of learning is the one using practical means. When you try as many coffee drinks as possible, you figure out what you like best and also become accustomed to the many different varieties of coffee available. If you want to make your coffee, you must purchase a coffee machine that delivers the best possible results in accordance with your wishes and expectations. Coffeemakerspecialist offers a wide variety of coffee machines you can pick and choose from, whether you like drip, single serve, thermal or French press coffee makers. You also have the option to purchase a device that comes with an incorporated coffee grinder. The best mr coffee coffeemaker also offers tips and recipes you can try.
You must also learn about every type of coffee drink available by sampling each of them repeatedly. The truth is that even the same recipe can be different depending on the brewing method. Some of the most popular varieties that you cannot miss out on include:
- Americano: A combination of a shot of espresso and hot water. However, it can be made stronger by adding two or even three espresso shots, depending on preference.
- Mocha: A massive favorite among chocolate fans, mocha combines coffee with chocolate and steamed milk.
- Café au Lait: As the name implies, this recipe includes equal parts coffee and steamed milk.
- Flat White: Espresso with microfoam, finely textured milk that has a glossy consistency. It is comparable to a latte, save for the fact that it has a higher coffee-to-milk proportion.
- Irish coffee: Contains sugar, cream or cream liqueur, Irish whiskey and, of course, coffee.
- Cortado: Essentially an espresso with warm milk. The difference lies in the milk being only steamed, not frothy like in other Italian coffee drinks.
- Ristretto: A short shot of highly concentrated espresso coffee, Ristretto is made with the same amount of coffee but extracted using a finer grinder and only half the usual amount of water.
Continue your research
The coffee industry is constantly changing and innovating. Coffee is trendy at the moment, having experienced a genuine resurgence in interest over the past few years. As such, it’s natural that you’ll have to constantly research the different varieties out there in order to maintain your knowledge. Visit as many local shops as possible, talk to the people who make coffee for a living, read books and sample different types of coffee when you’re abroad. Expanding your horizons will only work in your favor.