Saturday, July 29, 2006

Coffee Quality, and consumer awareness

Is it just me, or are more people in the southern states beginning to become more aware of good coffee vs. bad coffee?

More and more I have seen people come to a shop I am/was working at in search of something new, something different, something.. better.

Every single time I've made someone an espresso-based beverage for someone new to the shop, they have commented on how good it is. It's so sad, that people for so long have been forced to live with bad coffee, because the local business just don't respect their clientel enough to serve them the absolute best product they can. How is this allowed to happen? Where is the BBB of the Specialty Coffee industry?

Many like myself have become fed up and frustrated with the apathy around us. Some of us have taken on new responsibilities, sort of as ambassadors for our trade, to show oblivious coffee-drinkers "the light". It's amazing to me how people can think my home-roasted coffee is SOOO good. It's not that I'm bad, but I'm no professional roaster.

Coffee this good should be the STANDARD, not the exception. There is no mention of our niche of the culinary field on the Food Network. There is no sight of our niche in the culinary field on rows of magazine on the shelves of bookstores. Our we so ignored by the general public, or is the general public just unaware of what they are missing?

There are various publications that concern coffee, and the closest thing we have on bookstore shelves is Imbibe. How are people supposed to be able to LEARN about great coffee if no-one is serving it, and the publications are not within their scope?

There is word of Rocket Coffee opening a cafe. GOOD! At least there will be ONE good place to get coffee in the Phoenix area.

I've started my consulting and training business to help improve coffee on a more global scale. The problem being that people have to have a desire for improvement before betterment can begin. This desire can be the direct result of a loss of business as customers look eslsewhere in search of better coffee. This desire can also come from a business's RESPECT for their customers, and RESPECT for their (should-be)craft.

I do believe Aaron of AAH! Coffee is putting together a national review database for coffee houses. I've had this idea, but have done nothing about it. Several others have had the same idea. This needs to be done, and soon. People are beginning to have an increased awareness of what good and bad coffee REALLY is, and they should have a reliable way of locating it.

Other quality-minded coffee professionals, continue to carry the torch. Douse it in gasoline so that it burns brighter than ever before. "resistance is futile"

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