Posted on August 04 2016
By Sarah Bottoms
While serving coffee and espresso is oftentimes a passionate endeavor, it can also be a key element to the success of your business. Coffee is an intricate and ever-changing industry where things can be as simple as pressing “start” on your brewer or as complicated as tweaking grind, brew time, and temperature until achieving that sweet spot. The choice is ultimately yours, and we are here to help support and guide whichever direction you feel is the best direction for your menu and market. So, no matter your brewing technique, when faced with the option to serve a medium bodied Cafe Blend or a juicy Kenyan with lively acidity and undeniable notes of grapefruit, red cherry, and lime – which one do you offer to your customers? Most likely you have customers who tend to add milk or cream to their coffee which works well with a medium house blend, typically not straying far from a chocolate or caramel flavor profile. So, what happens when that juicy African coffee makes its debut at your café or restaurant and suddenly people are bringing their coffee back complaining that the cream is off? This is a challenge faced by most who want to introduce new and complex coffees to their business instead of or in addition to the typical crowd-pleasers such as a Colombian, Cafe Blend or French Roast.
There is, however, a tried-and-true way to getting customers to step out of their caffeinated comfort zone and try something extraordinary. Talk to them! Customers love to hear about your business, and your passion will become contagious. Not to mention, consumers are more-and-more food savvy, and the more transparent you can be about the coffees and varieties you are serving - the better! Educating customers about the offerings on your menu can play a significant role in the reception of the coffee. Something as simple as signage or visually available flavor profile notes can start the conversation and pique interest. Here at Speedwell we always have origin and farm information readily available for you to share. Encourage your staff to brew up samples and become familiar with the coffee they are talking about so they can engage customers and start a conversation. Every coffee has a story, and while there are some customers who want to grab their coffee and go out the door, there are those who are interested in learning the story behind what’s in their cup.