Is "But first, coffee," the daily mantra of that special someone in your life? At first glance, coffee lovers are easy to shop for. After all, there are plenty of coffee mugs and cute sweatshirts featuring coffee quotes out there!
But what if your kitchen cabinets are full to bursting, and your caffeinated companion isn’t the sweatshirt type?
This year, Valentine's Day is on a Sunday. We're thinking breakfast in bed, a rom-com movie marathon, or a luxurious brunch spread is in order. And for the perfect gift? Few things compare to a bag of Specialty Coffee.
These beans are the best of the best — and isn't that what your Valentine deserves?
What is Specialty Coffee?
First things first — what exactly do we mean when we say "Specialty Coffee?"
Specialty Coffee is the highest rank of coffee there is. Beans have to go through a rigorous inspection and grading process to earn this status. The process is so intensive that only 3% of the world's java makes the cut as Specialty Coffee! This exclusivity makes it a luxurious and delicious gift for the coffee enthusiast in your life.
How is Specialty Coffee Graded?
The grading process for Specialty Coffee is managed by the Specialty Coffee Association (SCA) — clever name, huh? ;)
It all starts with the green (aka unroasted) coffee beans. These get a thorough inspection, looking for defects like broken beans, insect damage, or unhulled beans. The green coffee is graded on a scale of 1 to 10, with Grade 1 being the best, most perfect bean. And you guessed it, Specialty Coffee has to be Grade 1.
Next, it's time for roasting and cupping. "Cupping" is the coffee industry term for a taste test. The SCA has ultra-specific standards for how coffee has to be brewed for this test. The rules include a specific grind size, coffee-to-water ratio, and even the size and material of the tasting glass!
Who does the tasting? Only a "Q Grader," certified by the SCA, can do the honors. These experts will look for body, aroma, and flavor worthy of a Specialty Coffee. They grade the cup on a scale of 1 to 100. To earn a place among the 3%, the coffee must score at least 80 points.
What We Love About Specialty Coffee
The farmers that grow these beautiful beans take extra special care of their coffee. Since there's so much monitoring and detail involved, Specialty Coffee growers can charge a higher price for their beans and pay their employees better wages.
People who choose to purchase specialty coffee are committing to the best product for their daily coffee ritual. And, they're helping to improve the quality of life for the people who dedicated their time and expertise to this growing process. Supporting the global coffee community is near and dear to our hearts at Simpli Press, so that's a cause we fully support!
Plus, Specialty Coffees are usually single-origin, coming from one farm, region, or country. Single-origin beans from different areas take on the unique characteristics of the surrounding earth, just like wine. Coffee beans from Kenya are much different than coffee beans from Colombia! By shopping single origin, the coffeecionado gets to enjoy the specific qualities of each distinct bean in their morning cup.
Give Small for Valentine's Day
We all know that this past year has been tough on small businesses. As small business owners ourselves, we think it's important to use our buying power to help independent coffee shops, roasters, and growers whenever possible.
Specialty Coffee beans are imported, unroasted, from their countries of origin. Then they're roasted to perfection, often by small, independent coffee shops. By buying a bag or two of this high-end, single-origin coffee from a local roaster, you're supporting your community and giving that lovable coffee fiend something they'll enjoy.
To round out the gift for your coffee lover, pair the beans with a cute mug and a package of their favorite cookies. Or sign them up for a Specialty Coffee subscription service, so they'll get a bag of coffee for several months. They'll get the gift of a top-tier cup of coffee every day!
Specialty Coffee & Simpli Press
Specialty Coffee is part of what started us on this Simpli Press journey. We wanted to bring out the best in our coffee & our ritual in everyday life.
We wanted a quick, convenient way to enjoy our morning ritual, without sacrificing taste or quality. With a 3-minute brew time and a superfine filter that lets you choose your grind, you can customize your morning brew based on your favorite bean and roast. And the coffee basket keeps the grounds securely in the carafe — instead of in your mug.
Share the gift of Specialty Coffee with your favorite person this Valentine's Day, and start brewing your way through the wide world of coffee!