For much of its history in America, coffee was abused. Robusta beans were endlessly circulated in coffee percolators, enhancing the already staggering bitterness of the coffee. The beverage is consistently seen as a way to become alert while on the go, rather than a beverage to enjoy. This abuse gave rise to the view of coffee as a simple, boring beverage that you need to douse with sugar to mask negative qualities.
Now, finally, some people are fighting back. They refute the notion that all coffee is the same and that it is the additives that matter. They think Starbucks burns their beans and then overbrews the coffee. They are the people who produce third wave coffee, and they are changing how the coffee shop is viewed forever.
The guiding principle to the third wave coffee movement is that coffee is an artisan ingredient. Much like chocolate or wine, the quality, type and origin of the coffee matters, and in a good cup of coffee you can taste these features.
There are only a few third wave coffee shops. The three that are usually referred to are Intelligentsia Coffee and Tea, Stumptown Coffee Roasters and Counter Culture coffee. All three run coffee shops and usually roast their own beans. They also source their coffee directly from the source, trying to find the very best quality coffee beans from any given reigon.
For those coffee shops too small to set up their own supply chain, all three major third wave coffee companies also ship their product. Through this supply chain, many small regional shops have appeared that sell third wave coffee. Of course, you can also order third wave coffee in small batches for personal use.
The experience of drinking a well brewed cup of third wave coffee is like nothing you have tasted before. By treating every ingredient with the utmost care, the coffee produced has exquisite flavor that is hard to describe without sounding sappy. The best part is, because several links of the supply chain have been removed, purchasing good third wave coffee is not much more expensive than purchasing other premium coffees.
So if you are looking for an entirely new coffee drinking experience, consider some lightly roasted thrid wave coffee from one of the major distributors. Stumptown, Intelligentsia and Counter Culture all ship nationwide, so there really is no excuse to not giving it a try.
Until next time keep your coffee hot!…