For many people, coffee is an integral part of their daily routine. Coffee lovers know that not all beans are created equal, and those who appreciate the finer nuances of coffee will seek out specialty coffee beans. But what is specialty coffee?
The Specialty Coffee Association (SCA) is a nonprofit trade association dedicated to making specialty coffee a thriving, equitable, and sustainable activity across the value chain. They have developed a rigorous scoring system to grade coffee by a process that involves roasting the green beans, brewing samples, and cupping to evaluate the value of the coffee's many defining characteristics, including aroma, flavor, body, acidity, and balance. The samples are then given a score from 0 to 100. Only coffees that score 80 or above are good enough to be considered specialty coffees.
By scoring coffee based on different factors, the SCA can provide detailed information about each coffee's unique flavor profile, including tasting notes. Coffee professionals worldwide use the SCA's scoring system to evaluate and buy coffee.
Handled With Care
High-quality coffee good enough to be scored as “specialty” is often grown, harvested, and roasted with care. Farms are in ideal conditions with the right amount of rainfall, altitude, and temperature. The beans are often handpicked so that only the ripe cherries are gathered, and they are then carefully checked for defects and sorted by size so only the best quality beans make it into your cup.
Specialty coffee is often produced in smaller quantities than regular coffee and sold at a premium to coffee traders or roasters. It's often packaged as coffee from a single origin with full transparency and traceability (tracking the complete supply chain journey.) Specialty coffee stands out from other grades of coffee, with unique flavors and aromas resulting from the beans being grown in specific regions or microclimates.
Roasted to Perfection
Radio Roasters Coffee is a specialty coffee roaster, and we take great care to roast each batch of beans perfectly. Our process brings out the unique flavors and aromas of the beans, creating an exceptional coffee experience.
Specialty coffee often goes beyond measuring the quality of the beans and the roasting process. It's also about the people behind the coffee. Many specialty coffee producers and traders prioritize environmental sustainability and ethical employment practices and ensure that farmers who grow the beans get paid fairly. As a specialty coffee roaster, we're proud to support sustainable and ethical coffee production.
The next time you're enjoying a cup of specialty coffee, know that it has passed a rigorous evaluation process and is exceptional in every way. Which coffee to try next? Use the helpful chat feature on our website or reach out.
Image Credit: Red Fox Coffee Merchants