What is Specialty Coffee?

Whether you are a longtime coffee fan, or someone who recently found the inspirational liquid pouring into your life, you may currently be exploring premium, luxury coffees, for the first time.  Many people often reach out to us and ask, “What is Specialty Coffee?” As a fellow coffee enthusiast, in short, Specialty Coffee is a beautiful, delightful, memorable experience. We invite you now, to pour a cup of Epicurean Coffee, sit back, relax and enjoy a longer, richer explanation of “What is Specialty Coffee?”

What Goes Into a Cup of Our Specialty Coffee?

For generations, our farmers have cultivated Arabica coffee plants, on the majestic, mountainous, rolling lands, of Colombia.  The farmers beautifully and carefully tend to their coffee plants, to ensure that the specialty coffee beans are growing in sustainable, harmonious conditions.

Years after a seedling, the harvest season arrives and only mature, red coffee cherries, that meet exceptional quality standards, will eventually become specialty coffee. Our knowledgeable farmers delicately hand-pick our magnificent coffee beans, and carefully wash and dry the beans, prior to sending them to our master roaster.

Our professional roasters gently roast these specialty coffee beans, to attain brilliant flavor notes, that will enlighten your palate, mind and spirit.

Our specialty coffee arrives in packaging that fully preserves its flavor profile. When you taste our specialty coffee, the flavor notes and smoothness will surely dazzle your taste buds.

What Are Some Important Characteristics of Specialty Coffee?

The concept of specialty coffee first appeared in the 1970s when consumers sought broader coffee flavor spectrums, to describe the beans of the highest quality.

  • As a specialty coffee purveyor, we focus on sustainable growing practices at every step of the production process.
  • The Specialty Coffee Association (The SCA), scores coffee beans on a 100-point scale and the coffee bean cupping, must score 80 or higher, to qualify as specialty coffee.
  • Specialty coffee is a single origin coffee.
  • This sustainable product features hand-picked coffee beans.
  • Arabica beans comprise most specialty coffees.
  • You can count on pesticide and herbicide-free coffee from specialty coffee growers. There are no synthetic fertilizers or chemicals ever used in the growing process; which means cleaner beans, land, water and air.
  • Specialty coffee is Non-GMO.
  • Our Specialty Coffee is low acid and easy on your stomach.
  • Specialty coffee flourishes in the shade, in high altitudes and is grown in micro-lots.
  • Specialty coffee beans are carefully roasted and produced in small roasting facilities.
  • A specialty coffee bean, with a high rating, can produce complex flavors and a soft, silky smooth taste. This coffee experience is what you learn to expect, from a cup of specialty coffee-made with the utmost of care.

How Is Specialty Coffee Different From Commercial Coffee?

Most likely, your first encounter with coffee involved sipping a dark-colored liquid that was very acidic, bitter, largely uninteresting and did not have any depth of flavor to the coffee. Your regular cup of Joe also was likely brewed from a bag of coffee that for months had sat on a shelf, prior to purchase.

We have just described commercial coffee- a product that simply does not measure up to the highest quality, purity and sustainability of specialty coffee.

Here are some key facts about Commercial Coffee

Commercial Coffee is:

  • often sourced from many origins
  • Almost always machine picked
  • Comprised of Robusta and Arabica Coffee
  • Almost always grown with the use of pesticides and herbicides, directly on the coffee plants and/or in the soil that grows around the plants
  • Grown in huge fields, in low altitudes, in the bright sun.
    • When the forests are cleared, to create the huge fields, the wild eco-system of fauna and flora is destroyed. The pest deterrents like, birds are left without a home-leading to the use of more pesticides and chemical fertilizers.
    • When there is rain,(since there is no tree cover), the nutrients in the soil sadly wash away; and unfortunately, the rainwater also carries the chemicals that lie in the soil and these chemicals end up in local water supplies.
  • Highly acidic and is generally hard on the stomach
  • Roasted and produced in large processing plants.
  • Often blended coffee.
  • Mass produced, as quickly and cheaply as possible
  • Cupped below the SCA score of 80, which often results in a bitter, acidic taste.

These important facts differentiate the purity of specialty coffee, from the low-grade, full of pesticides, commercial coffee.

If you desire coffee that truly makes you feel special, it’s time to put commercial coffee aside and turn your attention to luxury specialty coffee.

Who Drinks Specialty Coffee?

Specialty coffee is an exclusive, high quality product, but it remains accessible to any fan of pure, clean, diverse flavors. If that phrase describes you, this is an incredible type of coffee that you deserve in your life. You may prefer your coffee by the cup, or in a travel mug to go. Either of those vessels suits the fabulous specialty coffee drinker.

What Flavor Notes Will You Enjoy in Your Specialty Coffee?

You know you truly like specialty coffee, once you stop describing it as simply coffee. As you peruse our flavor profiles of our specialty coffees, you will notice mouthwatering words that will bring your taste-buds to life.

Here are some of the flavor notes from our past and present selections:

*Honey *Citrus *Floral* Jasmine* Panela *Tangerine* Berry*Peach*Hazelnut*Malt*Chocolate*Caramel

Just reading those words can make you want to brew a little specialty coffee right now!

Is Specialty Coffee a Sustainable Product?

You can judge a specialty coffee company by who and what it values. At Epicurean Coffee, we value our farmers, their communities and the ecosystems, where they raise their extraordinary coffee beans.

When you choose specialty coffee, you invest in tomorrow. We are committed to producing a sustainable coffee product. May our commitment shine brilliantly, via our coffee brand’s traits.

You will find most of the practices we have just mentioned, followed throughout the specialty coffee industry. Still, direct trade is uncommon. We proudly trade directly with our specialty coffee farmers.
Think of Direct Trade, as trade without some middle person (or people), taking a cut and raising prices. Direct Trade puts more money into our farmers’ communities, and it saves you money too. Now, that’s sustainable!

Can Specialty Coffee Change the World?

We ask you to visualize with us for a moment. Imagine specialty coffee changing your world. We believe it can. If it changes your world, and you tell a neighbor, specialty coffee could also change their world.

Of course, we will keep living our vision at Epicurean Coffee, changing our corner of the coffee world. Together, by changing one person’s world, one cup at a time, we may just change the way the world drinks coffee.

This beautiful vision begins when you make a conscious effort to choose sustainable specialty coffee, over cheaply processed, commercial coffee.

Where Do You Buy Specialty Coffee?

Epicurean Coffee is a prime specialty coffee supplier. We curate a memorable selection of specialty coffees, you can buy on our website. You will connect with diverse flavor profiles, among our specialty coffees. Try them for yourself, or as gifts for people you adore.

Thank you for sharing this experience with us today. We look forward to another journey together, when we publish our next specialty coffee blog post.


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