If you’re interested in enhancing how you enjoy your cup of coffee, then one of the most effective ways of doing so is growing your knowledge regarding coffee flavor evaluation. Learning to actually taste the coffee, and developing your sensitive flavor profiles, can not only give you something to talk about over a dinner party, but fine-tuning the evaluation technique sets the stage for in-depth coffee enjoyment. There are three primary categories when it comes to evaluating coffee: coffee body, coffee taste/sensation and coffee aroma. Fine-tune these categories, and you’ll soon be experiencing a whole new world of coffee.
Evaluating the Body of Coffee Flavor
Also referred to as coffee strength, the body of coffee depicts how the coffee actually feels within your mouth. Within the coffee industry, there are literally hundreds of body variations – ranging from light to extra-heavy. In order to further develop your understanding of coffee body, take time to inspect the following qualities in your next cup of Java.
Coffee Viscosity – The thickness, or viscosity, of a coffee variety is used to determine the overall level of the liquid, such as light bodied or heavy bodied. It’s important to train your brain to focus on viscosity as not something that’s solid, but rather the thickness of a liquid. For example, tea has a very light viscosity, it’s not very thick. On the other hand, the cream has a very thick viscosity rate. The thickness of coffee plays a major role in how the rest of your senses observe its flavor. Therefore, a light coffee can be vastly different in flavor than a medium or thick bodied coffee.
Coffee Weight – Many people don’t consider the “weight” of coffee as they take their first morning sip. However, one of the best ways to fine-tune this evaluation method is to allow the coffee to rest in your mouth. Therefore, it’s imperative that you don’t drink coffee that’s too hot. You want to be able to keep the coffee on your tongue for several seconds in order to analyze its texture and weight. While gently moving the coffee throughout your mouth, take note of how “thick” it feels. Does your tongue move easily or is there slight resistance due to its viscosity level?
Evaluating Coffee Sensation on Your Tongue
Much like evaluating the taste and flavor of wine, it’s imperative to take time to feel all the sensations a sip of coffee has on your tongue. Taste buds found on your tongue are some of the most sensitive organs within your body. There are four primary elements of taste buds: bitter, salty, sour and sweet. It’s imperative that you understand where these four sections are found on your tongue. By doing so, you’re able to better evaluate the true flavor profile of coffee. Once fine-tuned, you’ll be surprised by the number of subtle flavors a standard cup of coffee produces. Pay attention to what area of the tongue the first sip of coffee tingles. Try to ignore the flavor sensations that occur at the rear of your tongue, which is where the bitter buds are located. Because all coffee is bitter by nature, focusing on this taste element will do nothing but hinder your overall experience.