When it comes time to make a cup of Java, detail is important for a restaurant or food service business. Improving coffee service helps to enhance a general table service or advance specialized niche services like those offered at a coffee bar or coffee shop.
So what’s involved in optimizing coffee service?
Here are some excellent guidelines that we have found helpful for evaluating and improving the way that you serve coffee to customers.
Learn About Beans
Do your baristas know the difference between arabica and robusta beans?
(Hint: sweeter, smoother, taste versus stronger and more bitter sensation…)
There are so many brews and blends in the coffee industry that it can all become pretty bewildering. When managers and owners know more about bean varieties and specialties, they can offer better coffee service with more refined taste options. Specifically, there’s a lot of international research to be done on beans coming from various areas of the world, for example, Kenya vs. Peru, Columbia vs. Tanzania, etc.
Market Test Blends
Along with understanding more about bean cultures, it’s important to test various types of beans and coffee blends to make the best comparative choices. If you and your staff haven’t done extensive taste testing, how do you know that you have the right strains to please the palates of your customers?
One way to go the extra mile with this is to specifically develop four or five palate profiles, and then advertise them by their tastes. You can get into specific research for dark roast, sweeter blends, or the kinds of combination blends that make coffee tasting (like wine tasting) a fun activity for customers.
Whole Beans and Proper Storage
One very fundamental guideline for better coffee is to always use whole beans, and grind them at the point of service.
Coffee connoisseurs know that there’s a big difference between fresh-ground coffee, and coffee that comes ground in a package. The former releases its unique aromas and potency as it is ground on-site.
In addition, if you are using ground coffee or even whole beans, keep inventory stored in a dark, dry place. Storing at lower temperatures can help, too. This is another important aspect where the research that you do helps you to improve – a lot!
Don’t Overlook Water Quality
Remember that your coffee is only as good as your water. Coffee shops that use chlorinated tap water for specialized coffee blends are, in a way, shooting themselves in the foot if that poor taste gets into the mix. You may want to get distilled water or other types of similar resources into your supply chain.
Switch Up Cups and Mugs
Although coffee culture is very much a part of our food service industry, some people care more about how the cup of coffee feels in their hand.
To complement the best beans and blends, do market testing on your cups and mugs as well. One easy thing to do is brainstorm portion size. Some people don’t really like oversized mugs, because of the way they handle. Keep that in mind, too.
Some coffee shops like to offer extras like dog treats, specialty sweeteners, or prizes for kids. All of this can be effective, but it doesn’t take the place of the above steps in bringing the best coffee game to your operations.
Take a look at what we offer at Chefs’ Toys for a winning coffee service. We are “for chefs, by chefs” and we know the practical tricks of the trade that will stand you in good stead, every day as you and others work in your kitchen.
Contact Chefs’ Toys today to discover the gear that will help you to exceed your customers’ expectations.