Speciality coffee is defined as a term for coffee that scores more than 80 points in the Speciality Coffee Cupping Form. Quality is defines as gourmet, premium or top quality. This was defined by Erna Knutsen in 1974, The tea and coffee trade journal. Knutsen used it to define the best quality in defines microclimates.
The definition of microclimate can be from one hill to another, which will produce different results. The flavors is a result of firstly the microclimate which can be soil, rain, clouds, winds, shade growing and most likely a sum of the vegetation which will give the coffee plant in sum a sort of flavor DNA.
Other factors is processing, picking the ripe beans, low in defects, roasting profile and brewing method.
Speciality coffee is highly a craft, but also a science.
- Speciality coffee demands a higher price, often what is called a premium. The commodity price of coffee haven't changed much for a while. Price will range from top 2$ pr lb to low points 1$ pr lb. This has been the standard since the 1980's. Speciality coffee demands at least 0,5$ pr lb as for a premium, but can also reach new heights due to quality and demand. Price is stated by the NASDAQ
- Unprocessed coffee sums up around 1000 antioxidants before roasting. After roasting it will produce more organic chemical compounds like antioxidant methylpyridine, which protects us against certain tumor formations.
- Folic acid is a higly important antioxidant and is also found in coffee. Folic acid prevents cardiovascular disease.
- The most important antioxidants that we get from food are vitamins and two groups of herbal compounds – carotenoids and phenolic compounds (tannins). Phenolic compounds, or in particular phenolic acids, are equal to 6 – 10% of the pure weight of ground coffee. Their contents range from 200 mg. up to 500 mg. in a cup of coffee.
What is in your cup after brewing speciality coffee:
- Vitamin B2: 11% of the recommended daily intake
- Vitamin B5: 6% of the recommended daily intake
- Vitamin B1: 2% of the recommended daily intake
- Vitamin B3: 2% of the recommended daily intake
- Manganese: 3% of the recommended daily intake
- Potassium: 3% of the recommended daily intake
- Magnesium: 2% of the recommended daily intake
- Folic acid: 1% of the recommended daily intake
- Phosphorus: 1% of the recommended daily intake
Our Diamond Santos contains around twice of the caffeine that you will find in commercial coffee beans. Caffeine is one of the iconic chemical compounds in coffee, but it is also highly beneficial for the flavor development while roasting. As several chemical compounds mixed with mailard reaction triggers new organic chemical compounds in groups. Our coffee was measured with a NMR mass spectrometer in collab with NTNU, Trondheim - Norway.
Speciality coffee supports a circle of highly specialized and engaged people in the commodity which has a high intrest of supporting farmers in developing countries.
- Speciality coffee is to this point never a blend of several countries, but single farmer/cooperative philosophy
- The point system is ranged from 80-85 points which is very good, 85-90 points which is excellent and from 90-100 which is considered to be outstanding. The points for an average consumer will be noticable between 80-90 points. From 90 points +, it's like a really fine wine. Most likely it is an advantage to know what you are looking for.
- Speciality coffee is labour intens as a commercial roastery will automate almost the whole process, where green beans come in containers, go through a roasting process, goes into automatic packaging machines and into cardboard boxes on a pallet - and from then to supermarkets and chains. While speciality coffee needs people to take care of the whole process which employs more people.
- Ethics. A speciality coffee roastery tends to be more picky about the coffees they will pick and roast, also how the flavors are highlighted from the roasting process. While commercial coffee has different challenges when it comes to quality, the ethics and the overall quality.