“Ohhh yum, I can smell hints of fresh orange zest coming off of the one in the middle…”
“I’m getting a little something off the first one…maybe like the husk of a peanut in the aroma?”
“The third one is delicious…this can’t be Sumatra…there’s not enough body, but something about it is familiar…”
My favorite part of a blind tasting. The fleeting aromas that dance around the top of the tasting cup as we search for just the right words to describe what we’re tasting across each of the three cups.
“Do you know what you’re tasting yet? Any guesses? I’ll tell you one thing, these all three seem to be quite true to form today, the one in the middle seems to have come from a particularly good lot.” I lead the team on with little hints like this, hoping to help them make the connection between what they are tasting and three key blends in our Starbucks coffee lineup.
Finally, after much sniffing and slurping and debating, the guesses start flying. As it turns out, we’ve been tasting an example from each of the three distinct growing regions across the coffee belt: Latin America, Africa, and Asia/Pacific. Each region boasts a unique flavor, texture, aroma, and experience all its own. Each time we take a moment, to stop, taste, and take the coffee in, we experience something different. Today, it was Organic Shade Grown Mexico, the ever-classic Kenya, and a single-origin blend, Komodo Dragon.
It started as a basic idea, to taste a coffee from each growing region and compare, but what turned up was a particularly good lot, of Kenya. It just reminds us to never pass up that opportunity to connect with coffee…you could miss a particularly good lot of…well, almost anything!