The Coffee Experience
Truly exceptional coffee is like a fine wine, moving musical work, or masterpiece of art. The true measure of greatness is in attention to every detail. A great cup of coffee is not measured by taste alone. It involves the selection of premium beans, careful roasting, and cupping, selection of appropriate grind and brewing methods, as well as an understanding and knowledge of coffee's history. These elements combine to derive desired flavor, body, and richness. At Baroness, we offer our expertise to bring you exceptional coffees from around the world. We invite you to explore this section to find out more about the subtle nuances that define and help to create a great cup of coffee.
Coffee Roasts & Roasting
Seven different kinds
At Baroness, we begin the process of creating great coffee with the selection of the highest-grade 100 percent arabica beans. Prior to roasting, we examine samples to ensure their integrity. Beans are then shipped to our facility, where our roastmaster slowly roasts them in small batches at varying degrees to ensure maximum taste.
Coffee is roasted at varying degrees of intensity to achieve the desired flavor and body.
brown bean with dry surface; delicate aroma and flavor
medium brown bean with a dry surface and rich flavor
BARONESS ALL-CITY BLEND
slightly darker, with a shiny and oily surface and rich, full-bodied flavor
BARONESS DOUBLE DUTY BLEND
strong coffee with dark beans and oily surface
nearly black color; shiny, oily surface with rich, full-bodied flavor
BARONESS FRENCH ROAST
nearly black color; shiny, oily surface with rich, full-bodied flavor
BARONESS ITALIAN ROAST
dark black color; shiny, oily surface
with rich, full-bodied flavor
Green beans fresh from coffee plantations are roasted to perfect specifications for rich "straight" varietals, blends of beans, and flavored coffees.
Grinding, Brewing, Enjoying
Coffee's flavor and texture are greatly influenced by the selection of both grinding and brewing methods. At Baroness, we offer all our fine coffees as either whole bean or ground to your specific preference. Here is some information that may enhance your coffee experience.
Types of Grinds
Fine enhances the speed and proximity of hot water, promotes the release of essential oils, and minimizes caffeine and acids.
Medium the most popular grind, it can be used in most brewing methods.
Coarse offers larger granules, most often used in press and plunger pots.
Turkish and other Arabic coffees and other strong coffee drinks may require a specialized grind or grinder. Please ask a Baroness representative for a recommendation.
Begin with your favorite Baroness coffee selection.
To preserve flavor and freshness, try to grind just what you will need at that time.
Always store remaining coffee in an airtight container. Please review the bag for specific storage suggestions.
Use fresh, cold tap water or bottled water.
Add coffee according to your preference.
Always use a clean brewer.
Do not let the coffee sit out. Always drink while fresh.
Keeping Coffee Fresh
Ensure maximum freshness
with every cup
At Baroness, we want each and every cup of our delicious coffee to be at its freshest--whether you purchase it in our store or brew your own at home. That is why we have a few tips for effective whole bean coffee storage that will seal in taste and freshness.
Always store coffee in an airtight container.
Coffee stored at room temperature will remain fresh for one week.
For coffee to remain fresh for up to four weeks, refrigerate it.
If you purchase coffee for occasions and events in advance and expect to retain freshness for up to four months, deep freeze it.
On removal from the freezer, it is preferable to grind only the beans you will use immediately. In fact, grinding frozen beans keeps the grinder cool and helps preserve the richness and essential oils that result in a clean, fresh taste.
The Art of Cupping
The process of examining and evaluating a coffee’s flavor is commonly referred to as cupping. This process is most beneficial in the development of custom blends and flavors, identification of flavor defects, and comparison of coffees. At Baroness, we cup all of our coffees, to ensure that our customers receive only the best flavors, aromas, and roasts.
Preparing the environment
In a typical cupping session, several cups of coffee are arranged in a triangle on a table or work surface. The top of the triangle usually contains a sample (or samples) of the roasted coffee and a sample of the green coffee to be evaluated. A cup of room temperature water and cupping spoons should be placed in the center of the table.
Preparing the coffee
Place water on the stove to boil. Add 2 tablespoons of freshly roasted and freshly ground coffee to a 6 oz cup. The grind should be between a French press and a drip coffee size. The coffee should be roasted light, to enable evaluation of defects, as well as sweetness and aroma that burn off during a darker roast. To further ensure roast consistency, samples may be visually observed for differences in color--also known as eye-cupping.
Analyze the fragrance and aroma
Before adding water, smell the grounds to evaluate the coffee’s fragrance. Add water (but do not stir) and note anything distinct or memorable regarding the aroma. Make sure to add hot water to the spoons, so that the spoons and coffee samples remain at the same temperature.
After a minute or so, break the coffee’s crust using a preheated spoon. This is when the most potent burst of aroma will occur. Place your nose over the cup and push the coffee down into the cup and evaluate the aroma. Rinse the spoon in hot water and continue with the next sample.
Analyze the flavor
After the coffee has cooled, place some on a spoon and slurp it strongly so that it coats the tongue and reaches the nasal passages--another powerful tasting tool. Write down your observations of flavor, acidity, aftertaste, and body. Spit out the coffee and rinse, move on to the next cup, and note differences and similarities. You'll soon be able to discern the subtle nuances that distinguish various coffees.
The history & mystery of coffee
The origin of coffee has long been the subject of friendly debate. The earliest facts indicate that coffee may have been discovered around the sixth century by Ethiopian goat herders, who were amazed by the “rush” created by eating these wild berries. Soon, these were discovered by various tribes, who took them as sustenance on hunting trips.
By the thirteenth century, coffee had made its way across the Arabian Peninsula via trade routes. This wonder berry then came into usage as both a medicinal remedy and as part of religious ceremonies--where its "power of revival" kept Muslims awake during hours-long ceremonies.
As the Muslim territory expanded, so too did coffee’s reach to Turkey and North Africa. By way of trade, coffee arrived in Europe and became a middle-class staple--critical to business discussions, dinner parties, and friendly gatherings.
Soon, during the 16th and 17th centuries, coffee arrived in India and also was cultivated by the Dutch on the Indonesian archipelago of Java.
Coffee's entrance into modern-day America occurred sometime around 1755. However, tea continued as the favorite drink of "Americans" until 1773, when the Boston Tea Party shifted the emphasis to coffee. The rest of the story, as they say, is history.