From bean to cup, every producer, roaster, and barista has their own tried and tested secrets.
It is one of the most popular morning drinks in the world and serving a good cup of coffee is a great way to start your customers’ day.
Coffee is also a drink that brings us together. It can be enjoyed at any time of day by any age group, so by offering quality coffee, either in its classic form, or chilled, flavored, decaffeinated or with any number of milks, you can attract new customers to your business.
Everyone has their own secret method for making the perfect cup of coffee, from the farmers growing the right selection of coffee beans across different coffee regions, to the baristas who have honed their craft to create the perfect cup.
There are a lot of things to consider when making a great cup of coffee. Whether it’s using a certain water pH, selecting the correct extraction rate, choosing the most advanced coffee machine on the market, or perfecting latte art. Here are a few things you need to consider.
1. Select the perfect bean
The perfect cup of coffee starts with the right selection of coffee beans. The main coffee regions are found in Central America, South America, Asia, and Africa. Known as “the bean belt,” they represent the zone that provides the perfect coffee growing conditions, and each provides distinct characteristics.
It’s not only where they’re grown that makes a difference to the coffee beans’ final flavor, but also their elevation; coffee grown at higher altitudes tends to have a richer and fuller flavor compared to coffee grown at sea level.
Growing conditions and the time of year can also affect the taste, so beans from different regions are often blended to create a more balanced flavor. Then a further difference is created depending on how the beans are roasted and ground.
When it comes to grinding the beans, the ideal grind size depends on the brewing equipment used. Finer grounds allow for more infusion, whereas coarser grounds allow more water to pass through.
The longer a bean is roasted, the more flavors and aromas are unlocked. A cup of light roast coffee typically has a more delicate flavor, whereas a dark roast reveals smokey undertones and bold flavors.
2. Purchase the best equipment
Once you’ve chosen the beans, you need to find the right commercial coffee machine brand. There are so many different options on the market, so you need to consider the right features according to your needs. Do you want something more manual for a hand-crafted touch? Or will an automated option mean you can serve more customers at once?
At Electrolux Professional, we offer two different types of commercial coffee machines to choose from: espresso and pod.
Drawing flavor from loose coffee grounds, espresso machines are often the option favored by coffee shops, restaurants and hotels. Electrolux Professional TANGO technology means you can freshly grind beans and use a steam wand to create different styles of coffee all in one machine, while the AURA combines classic espresso style with a digital screen. With detailed programming and machines that make several drinks simultaneously, you can ensure the perfect cup every time while maintaining speedy service. These are perfect for more specialist coffee shops.
Single service pod
Ideal for a quick self-service coffee in a hotel room, or at an office or event, pods are single-serve coffee grounds that are placed in a designated spot within the coffee machine. Pods and capsules are an easy-to-use, no-fuss option – ideal for a simple espresso or milk-based coffee. These machines deliver consistency and come with a built-in steam wand to heat and foam milk and offer more coffee options at the touch of a button.
3. Use the equipment correctly
Once you’ve decided on the perfect commercial coffee machine, you need to ensure you know how to use it correctly. Every small detail contributes to making the perfect cup of coffee, from time settings and water temperature to extraction rate.
The quality of your cup of coffee can be affected by the water you use, so make sure you’re using good-quality water to enhance the coffee’s flavor. Opt for clean, filtered water (a pH between 6.5 and 7.5 is considered the ideal) and steer clear of soft water, as the minerals in water help extract flavor. Without them, your drink will be lifeless.
The right pressure depends on grind size, water temperature, roast, and personal preference, so experiment until you hit the right spot. As a guide for espresso-making, seven to nine bars usually produce crema, the aromatic golden foam on top of a freshly brewed espresso.
Again, when using an espresso machine, tamping is the compression of coffee grounds in the filter basket and affects the quality of the espresso shot. Add coffee to the filter and ensure it’s leveled off for the perfect tamp, pushing down to create a flat, even bed. This ensures even flow of the water through the coffee, which creates an even extraction of flavor. One firm tamp should be enough to ensure a quality cup of coffee.
The hotter the water, the quicker the extraction, but if it’s too hot, it can lead to over-extraction resulting in a bitter flavor. If the temperature’s too low, coffee will be under-extracted, leading to a sour taste and lack of body. So you need to ensure the temperature is carefully controlled.
4. Look after your coffee maker
In addition of installing a pre-treating system on the machine, so to leave on the water the right quantity of minerals and to remove chlorine and phosphates, it’s essential to clean your coffee machine with care to prolong its lifespan, so you can keep perfecting the art of coffee making for years to come. Without proper cleaning, coffee oils and grounds can build up and cause your coffee to taste bitter. Build up of mineral deposits from water also prevent the full extraction of flavors from coffee grounds and can compromise the boiler heating capacity of coffee machines.
Daily cleaning is essential to keep your coffee machine in good shape to make delicious-tasting coffee. Most modern commercial coffee machines are equipped with automatic cleaning cycles, making the process much easier. The performance is enhanced even more if used with the right kind of detergent with the correct dosage. Detergents will help you maintain a high hygiene level while removing mineral and milk deposits caused by steaming and frothing. All so you can ensure you make the perfect cup of Joe every time.