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Coffee Coaching: Spoon SLU Event a Success

BALANCED+BREWING%3A+Matt+Foster+from+Kaldi%E2%80%99s+Coffee+Roasting+Company%0Ateaches+SLU+students+how+to+brew+the+best+coffee+with+limited+resources.
BALANCED BREWING: Matt Foster from Kaldi’s Coffee Roasting Company
teaches SLU students how to brew the best coffee with limited resources.

BALANCED BREWING: Matt Foster from Kaldi’s Coffee Roasting Company teaches SLU students how to brew the best coffee with limited resources.

Tannock Blair

Tannock Blair

BALANCED BREWING: Matt Foster from Kaldi’s Coffee Roasting Company teaches SLU students how to brew the best coffee with limited resources.

Tannock Blair, Associate News Editor

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Last Wednesday night, Nov. 29, the Spring Hall community kitchen was filled beyond capacity by eager coffee enthusiasts of the SLU community for Easy Ways to Make Great Coffee. The event was organized by members of Spoon University SLU in collaboration with Kaldi’s Coffee Roasting Company. The wholesale coffee trainer for Kaldi’s, Matt Foster, came to teach SLU students how to make the best coffee possible with minimal time and a meager budget.

Foster simplified the coffee-making process into two different inexpensive and effective methods: the immersion method and the hybrid method.

The immersion method is perhaps the one that most of the “uninitiated” would understand and involves using the French press. Foster explains that it is important to use a coarse grind, or larger particles of coffee, for this method, as too fine a grind would make the coffee astringent. He also recommends waiting for four minutes instead of immediately plunging once the water is poured on the coffee. The immersion method creates a heavy body coffee and sometimes has an oily or somewhat gritty texture.

The hybrid method is less common and perhaps more popular to the coffee enthusiast crowd and involves using a more recent contraption: the Clever Dripper. It is called the hybrid method because it combines the immersion and drip method. It uses a paper filter to stew the coffee in the carafe and then drips the brew into a cup—at two and half minutes, according to Foster. Unlike the immersion method, fine grinds of coffee work better because it extracts more nuanced flavors. The hybrid method creates a light to medium body coffee with a smooth texture.

When it comes to buying coffee, Foster emphatically discourages buying preground coffee. Obviously, a huge aspect of coffee is personal preference; however, Foster explains that the roasting process can have a huge impact on flavor. Typically, dark-roasted beans tend to have a tougher flavor, while lighter-roasted
beans give better aromas. He explained that coffee oxidizes quickly, so preground coffee loses its oils (an essential part of the flavor). When it comes to coffee shelf-life, Foster compares a bag of coffee to that of a loaf of bread—around two weeks. Foster recommends using blends and medium roast coffee with the immersion method and single-origin and light roast coffee with the hybrid method. Foster also went on to explain the coffee-making process. It takes four to five years of growth for a Coffea, a coffee plant, to be ready for harvest. The fruit is hand-picked, and two beans can usually be extracted from each cherry. On average, there is about one pound of coffee per plant. The coffee beans then go through the roasting process.

The event was a huge success, with many students walking away with a greater respect for the craft of coffee-brewing and practical applications for the student lifestyle.

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Coffee Coaching: Spoon SLU Event a Success