Information and advice

Αrabica και Robusta
Arabica and Robusta There are two types of coffee, Arabica and Robusta. The Arabica varieties are known for their premium quality and their distinct aroma. The Arabica fruit is relatively large, elongated and has a flat shape. The best Arabica varieties come from Latin America and Africa. The Robusta varieties present less aromatic properties but are more resistant to diseases and can produce large quantities. The Robusta fruit is round, dense and shorter than the Arabica fruit. Robusta varieties can be found in Africa and India.
Types of Arabica coffee
There are several types of Arabica coffee such as Typica, Bourbon, Caturra, Catuai, Mundo Novo, Maragogype, Pacamara, Pacas, Catimor and Geisha. More information regarding these Arabica varieties you can find in the section coffee of the website.

Caffeine effects
Caffeine can be found in products such as coffee, cocoa and tea. Its effects depend on numerous factors such as the amount of caffeine per cup, the preparation of the drink, the coffee origin etc. In general, the consumption of 1-3 cups of coffee per day increases the alertness and helps the human body to maintain the satisfactory energy levels.
In one espresso shot 7,5 gr (25ml), the amount of caffeine is 60-90mlg.

Coffee extraction describes the transfer of taste compounds from solid to liquid form and includes solubles and non solubles particles. In solubles we find solids and gas that define the taste and the aroma of the coffee respectively. In the non solubles we find solids and oils that combined characterize the body, the flavor and the aftertaste of the coffee. Only 18-22% of the coffee bean is transferred to the cup and is translated in 1-1,5% of strength (acceptable concentration limits of solid coffee in 98,5-99% of water).

The coffee tree
-We find the tree Coffea in Africa, South Asia and South America. It belongs to the Rubiaceae family. This tree is an evergreen bush or small tree and has dark green bright leaves.
-The flower is similar to the jasmin & orange flower. It grows in bunches and has an intense aroma.
-The fruit has an oval shape, 15 millimeters long.
As the fruit matures, from green color it turns to a beautiful red or yellow (depending on the variety) and has the size of a cherry.
-The fruit has two coffee beans. Some fruits produce only one bean known as caracoli (peaberry).

1. Factor Variety

• The Arabica coffee type is characterized superior coffee. It grows in high altitude (600-2100m). The fruit is large, long and relatively flat. It has 44 chromosomes and it produces high quality coffee.

Most important Arabica coffee varieties:
Typica / Bourbon / Caturra / Catuai / Mundo Novo / Maragogype / Pacamara / Pacas / Geisha

• Robusta coffee is more resistant and produces higher yields. The tree grows close to the equator, in valleys and in an altitude up to 600m. The fruit is round and shorter than the Arabica fruit. It has 22 chromosomes and a relatively bitter taste or sometimes a spicy taste.
Most important Robusta coffee varieties:
Kouillou / Conillon / Niaouli

2. Factor terroir

The coffee grows in fertile soil and ideally in volcanic soil. It needs depth because its roots sometimes reach 2 meters below soil level to find nutrients. Its basic characteristics are the altitude where the coffee trees grow, the ranking based on altitude, the soil, the density of trees as well as shading.

Altitude has a positive impact on coffee as well as low temperatures that enhance the aroma and acidity of coffee.
As far as ranking is concerned, every coffee producing country has a different ranking method depending on altitude
As far as soil is concerned, ideal soil is mainly volcanic, rich in nitrogen, warm and mild with high rainfall levels.
The density of trees should be 1300-1700 trees per hectare. Varieties such as Caturra & Catimor are ideal for high density.
Shading is related to the balance between light and radiation and is beneficial for coffee growing for the reasons above:
– Filter – photosynthesis adjustment – protection of roots
– Slow maturation (body, acidity)
– Humidity retained
– Water retained in rainfall periods
– Soil ecology
– Protection of trees from the wind
– Temperature stability – cool temperatures in the morning, warm temperatures in the night.

3. Factor coffee producing micro-zones

In every coffee producing country there are smaller micro-zones producing coffee presenting different taste characteristics. These micro-zones exist in countries such as Guatemala, Costa Rica, Ethiopia, El Salvador, Brazil and Kenya.

Micro-zone examples are presented below:
– Guatemala: Huehue, Coban, Acatenango, Antigua, Atitlan, Fraijanes, New Oriente, Volcanic San Marcos
– Costa Rica: Guanacaste, West Valley, Central Valley, Tarrazu, Tres Rios, Orosi, Brunca, Turrialba
– Ethiopia: Harar, Yirgacheffe, Sidamo, Wollega, Limu, Bebeka & Tepi, Djimmah, Bale

4. Factor harvest

The quality of a very good coffee is also influenced by its harvesting method. The ideal harvesting method is handpicking, selecting only the ripe fruits, often passing twice from the same tree.
Only the ripe fruits are selected, the so called cherries that have a deep red color or intense yellow (depending on the coffee variety). These fruits are free from diseases.

– Hand picking
The best and more expensive picking method. It does not harm the tree, the quality of the bean is high.
– Mechanical harvesting
All fruits are collected using a harvesting machine. The ripe fruits have to be separated after harvesting. This method is applied only in flat plantations
This method is similar to handpicking, the difference is that fruits are not selected. Workers have to pass from the trees many times to select all fruits, unripe and ripe. Then, the ripe fruits are separated after harvesting.

5. Factor processing

During coffee processing, there are three critical steps that affect the quality of coffee
– The selection (separation of ripe fruits from unripe fruits)
– Fermentation and fermentation time
– Dry – how sure we are that the drying process is completed

The ripe fruits are transferred right after harvesting at the processing station (beneficio).

There are various processing methods:

Natural: the beans are placed in elevated “beds” in fine layers so that the beans are dried naturally by the sun heat.

Wet: the ripe fruits are compressed through the depulpers and the outer skin is removed. The depulped fruits move to water tanks. There, the mucilage is removed through the fermentation process. The fruits are washed and then placed in the drying station (mechanical or natural drying). As soon the humidity of the bean reaches 10-12%, the green bean is released from the pergaminum and is ranked according to its density.

Pulped natural: the outer skin of the ripe fruits is removed with a depulper like in the wet processing method. The difference is that the fruits are not transferred to water tanks and the mucilage is not removed but dries with the parchment. This processing method is used in countries with low humidity levels.

Honey: honey processing is used in Costa Rica and Panama and is similar to pulped natural. The ripe fruit is depulped with a depulper and the mucilage dries with the parchment that surrounds the green bean. This fact has a result a cup rich in body and mild acidity.

Also, new, innovative hybrid processing methods such as the anaerobic and carbonic maceration process have been applied in recent years.

6. Factor Sorting/Ranking

Sorting can be done by hand or mechanically. Defectscan be visible or evident only by cupping the coffee. When we detect 2 defects in one bean, the defect with the strongest impact on the quality of coffee is the primary defect. Then, according to the number and type of defects in a 300gr sample coffee is ranked as commercial, premium or specialty:
– Specialty: 0 defects/300gr
– Premium: until 8 defects/300gr
– Commercial: 9-23 full defects/300gr
– Below standard: 24-86 defects/300gr

7. Factor storage-packaging-shipping

– Grain-pro bags that are placed in burlap bags for a better protection of the green bean.
– Aluminium bags vacuum packed (specialty coffee)
– 25lb bags (microlot coffee)

8. Storing coffee at the roaster

An important factor of the coffee quality is the storage at the roaster. The roaster should store the coffee with respect to some basic requirements such as the humidity level, the cleanliness and the duration of storage before roasting.

9. Factor roasting

Research has revealed that there are 1500 defined ingredients in coffee. Understanding the different aromatic and tasting characteristics of coffee, eliminating the defects and stabilizing the flavor profile are all elements of the art of roasting.
Roasting scale based Agtron:
Coffee is characterized by the roasting degree. Therefore coffee can be roasted with respect to the following scale:
– Light
– Light – Medium
– Medium
– Moderately Dark
– Dark
– Very Dark

> Blending vs Origin vs Single Estate

– Blend: commercial coffees blended using low quality coffee and creating a signature blend
to obtain the same flavor profile every year.
– Origin: all flavor characteristics of a specific origin are revealed from a single origin coffee.
– Single Estate: reveal the higher quality of a single coffee farm, of a single coffee producer and the importance of the microclimate.

10. Factor preparation methods

The quality of coffee and the highlight of the special and unique characteristics of each coffee are affected by the preparation method that the barista will choose:
– Ibrik
– Espresso
– Drip
– Chemex
– Clever
– Syphon

11. Factor barista skills

Finally, the quality of coffee is affected by the barista that will prepare it. The knowledge, his/her technical skills, his/her passion as well as his professionalism are all critical points that will affect the final result in the cup.

Yiannis Taloumis
Q Grader

Coffee extraction describes the transfer of flavoring ingredients from the solid to liquid state and includes soluble and insoluble elements. The soluble elements are solids and gases, from those, the solids, characterize the taste and the aroma. Incomprehensible elements are solids and oils, which together characterize the “body”, the taste, the aroma and the aftertaste of the coffee. Only 18-22% of the coffee bean is transferred to the beverage and translates to 11.5% strength (acceptable solid coffee concentration limits in 9998.5% water).
Extraction is the last part of the process – pre-extraction and pressure increase (in espresso preparation). During the extraction process, the hot water comes in contact with the coffee particles, removing the gaseous elements and permeating solids. The extraction rate is related to the extraction rate and the contact time of the hot water with the ground coffee.

• Factors determining extraction
Extraction depends on the size of ground coffee particles, water temperature, coffee / water ratio, and stirring if it is for drip coffee.

• Factors that affect the extraction rate
The temperature of the closure, in the case of espresso, and the corresponding vessel in the case of drip, the size of ground coffee molecules and the proportion of water and ground coffee ratio are important factors for the ideal extraction rate.

• Production quality
The quality and flavor balance are determined by the solvent extraction temperature, coffee molecule size, water chemistry and contact time. In addition, the uniformity of the extraction affects the taste.

• Water temperature and extraction
The temperature affects both the extraction rate and the flavor. There are ingredients that dissolve faster at higher temperatures and more at lower. This different switching of solids determines the balance of taste.

Actions for the preparation of a perfect cup of Filter coffee
-Dose 8gr-10gr
-Tamping (it depends on the quantity of coffee taking into consideration the rule 1ml/sec)
-Delivery time 23sec-25sec
-Volume in the cup 23ml-25ml
-Temperature of water to the group 90C-93C
-Pump pressure 9atm

According to the procedures followed by the Golden Cup, the preparation of a perfect cup of filter coffee is the following:
1. The ideal coffee to water equivalence is 50-65gr of coffee for 1 liter of water.
2. The brewing time is 4-6 minutes for 1,8 liters using a standard coffee machine
3. Good water quality that is defined from its neutral Ph. 7.0, while levels 6.5-7.5 are considered to be acceptable.
4. Ideal water temperature is 92C-96C.

Action for the preparation of a perfect cup of espresso
The necessary controls are described below:
Control of the grinder:
1. Coffee grinding
2. The measuring/dose
3. The freshness of the coffee beans

Control of the espresso machine:
1. Water level
2. Boiler temperature and pressure
3. Positive-displacement pump pressure
4. Filters, drippers, gaskets and filter rings
5. Correct delivery of the water to the group
The espresso machine must be cleaned and maintained in a systematic way, in order to work efficiently.

Daily control
Filters, filter rings, drippers, cup gaskets, basin and discharge basin have to be cleaned on a daily basis. The drippers should be cleaned with the blind filter using a soda detergent specific for espresso machines. In order to clean the cup gaskets, a specific brush should be used, while regarding the filters and filter rings, they should be left in a bath of water overnight, using a specific product.

Annual Control
It is necessary to control the mechanical parts of the espresso machine with the intervention of qualified personnel.

Pour over:

Step 1: Choose your favorite taf coffee through our  e-shop

Step 2: In your preferred pour over accessory insert the filter and pre-wet it

Step 3: Use 15gr of ground coffee

Step 4: Using 93oC water, cover the coffee with 30ml of water and wait for the pre-infusion for 23sec

Step 5: Continue with pouring water until the total beverage is 250ml

Step 6: Serve & Enjoy!

French Press:

Step 1: Choose your favorite taf coffee in beans or ground through our  e-shop

Step 2: Use 18gr of coarsely ground coffee

Step 3: Pour a small amount of water (93°C) and swirl gently

Step 4: Add water until you reach 300ml and mix gently using a spoon

Step 5: 10sec before reaching 3min, place the lid and push the plunge slowly all the way down

Step 6: Serve & Enjoy!

Italian Mokka Pot:

Step 1: Choose your favorite taf coffee in beans or ground for Mokka Pot through our  e-shop

Step 2: Fill the Mokka Pot with cold water and place on top the filter basket

Step 3: Insert the coffee into the basket with a spoon carefully till the top and then press a little for an even result in the coffee pack

Step 4: Clean the ground coffee remains and screw very firmly the bottom part back in

Step 5: Place it on a kitchen stove or low heat gas stove and just wait for a few minutes for the water to go up and brew your coffee

Step 6: Serve & Enjoy!