17 March 2016

How to overcome the problem of bad coffee in restaurants? I’ll tell you my point of view…

After 13 years in the coffee industry, here’s some advice 

I worked for 13 years in the coffee industry, first for B2B green coffee trade (raw coffee) and then I changed to roasted coffee, working with two companies of my city, as Sales Representative for Italy.

So, after this brief introduction about my personal experience with coffee, I can tell you what I think the solution to this problem could be!

Even the less experienced know that to make a good cup of coffee you need many excellent elements, and some of you might have heard the 5M rule for an excellent espresso (miscela =blend, macinatura= mill, macchina=machine, mano= hand, manutenzione= maintenance)!

I’d also add P for Passion and V for Volume.

I’d definitely say that this last point is the most important for restaurants, because they don’t have the same volumes as bars do in coffee consumption and that’s why, even if you apply the 5 Ms, your coffee will never be as good as one you drink at a bar.

So, to not bind yourself to coffee companies that have free-use coffee machines, with annual contracts linked to consumption levels, or heavy machinery that can be problematic, a “new” solution has been available for a while … the coffee pod or the capsule!

Beautiful and convenient little plastic containers (even biodegradable now), in which the content is visibly less than 7 gr (minimum weight necessary for the perfect espresso), extremely expensive (up to 0,45 cents each), with coffee machines made exclusively for specific brands of capsules, minimal annual volumes to respect contracts, broken machines and unavailable engineers, inconvenient waste disposal… well… as you see, even this solution isn’t great.

So, what to do!? Not offer our guests a good cup of coffee at the end of the meal? How can the problem be solved????

Here’s my solution!

Our dear old moka pot, hidden away at the back of the cupboard!

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Exactly! I’d use that, creating a nice army of them, from the 2 cup moka up to the 12 cup one, and serve it after the meal as if it was a home-made dinner!

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It’s the best way to have your guests feel at home, surrounded by a wonderfully strong coffee scent and the feeling of family and sharing that will restore anyone’s mood and create a typical Italian feeling for any foreigners that don’t often use it to make coffee. Tradition and innovation… I bet you’re wondering: why innovation? Because you’ll be free from any contract, and you’ll be among the few that at the end of the meal can offer a “Coffee menu”, so that your clients can choose different blends or even different brands of coffee!

In 2015 there were menus for wine, water, oil, and lots of other things, so why not also have a menu for coffee?

This way you’ll always be flexible, you’ll be able to choose different variations and play with the product, as well as having a definite cost advantage and being pioneers of the idea.

As Burt Lancaster said: “ I judge a restaurant by its bread and its coffee”

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