Restaurants, convenience stores, hotels and other foodservice operators rely on their hot beverage service to complement their menus and provide customers with a reason to come in and purchase food and drink. Coffee is a core component of any beverage service, and brewing a great cup of coffee for your customers seems like it should be easy. But in a busy restaurant or convenience store, it can be challenging to make sure your coffee is consistently the best quality possible. Here are a few basics to help you produce that dark, rich flavor that will keep your customers coming back for more.
Water is Key – Pure, filtered water aids in producing the best tasting and smelling coffee every time you brew.
Clean water is key in the process because water makes up more than 98% of the coffee in your cup.
When the water in coffee has a high mineral deposit content (like tap water can have), it can negatively affect the taste of your coffee.
If your tap water is high in mineral content, consider installing a water filter on your line going into your brewer.
Also, be sure you’re doing regular maintenance and cleaning of your coffee brewing equipment to keep it brewing at optimal levels.
Quality Coffee is a Must – Of course, you want fresh coffee.
Many roasters will use a one-way, degassing valve to help ensure the coffee you buy maintains its freshness.
Use the right amount of coffee grounds. Many leading national restaurant chains know that consumers prefer a richer cup of coffee and are using portion packs of 2.5, 2.75 and 3.0 ounces.
Make sure your coffee grind texture is right for your brewing method. Different grinds work best with specific brewing methods (drip, french press, espresso machines, etc.) A medium grind works well for most commercial brewers that use a flat bottom filter.
Know your Water Temperature – Water temperature can affect the flavor and extraction of each cup of coffee you drink.
Ideal water temperature is within the range of 195º Fahrenheit to 205º Fahrenheit.
Make sure your coffee service provider checks your equipment periodically to adjust the water temperature, if needed.
Colder water will result in flat, under-extracted coffee, while water that is too hot will also cause a loss of quality in the taste of the coffee.
Don’t Scrimp on Your Coffee Filter – Paper filters can provide the best tasting, clearest cup of coffee available.
Choose a paper filter that is porous enough to allow coffee grains to flow freely during extraction and is strong enough to prevent collapsing, yet gentle enough to strain particles without taking away the flavor.
Read the details before choosing the paper filter for your brewing equipment.
Be sure to choose the correct size and shape filter to fit your brewing equipment.
Cleanliness is Critical – It’s important to regularly clean and inspect your coffee brewing equipment.
It might seem like running hot water through your brewing equipment is enough to keep it clean. But, oils from the coffee can impact future brews.
Be sure your coffee service provider checks your equipment and cleans the sprayhead(s) on a regular basis.
Don’t ignore the coffee decanter, check it daily to make sure there is no coffee residue or burned coffee that could affect the taste of your freshly brewed coffee.
A quality coffee service provider will help you maintain your equipment, calibrate the brewing settings and troubleshoot if you have any issues with the taste or appearance of your brewed coffee.