Monday, June 27, 2011

Starbucks Reserve: Gourmet Coffee tasting lessons

If you  imagined tasting sessions are only for wine, it was a great learning experience to be invited to a coffee tasting session at the Capitol Hill Starbucks at Pennsylvania Avenue and 3rd Street.a few weeks ago. My coffee habit is highly influenced by the South Indian Coffee that I have been drinking since my childhood back in India and I appreciated the opportunity to learn about Starbucks Reserve.



What is Starbucks Reserve :

At this particular tasting  Starbucks district manager Dawn DePetris and manager Ryan M. Hudnall showed me and two other food bloggers Ja-Naé Duane and Eric Wilkens of the Capital Cooking Show the way to taste the coffee. 


Its obvious that the coffee should not be mixed with milk or sugar and you close the top of your cup with your palm and inhale the aroma of the coffee and then slurp the coffee in your mouth. Smelling the coffee before you drink it will give your taste buds the anticipation of what the coffee will taste like.when you drink it.

The Rwanda Gakenke Fair Trade Certified™  tasted of Chiocolate and lemongrass and Sumatra Tapanuli had a flavor of chocolate and fig. Both these coffees are brewed in a clover press and some of the other Reserve coffees are made in a French press.

I learnt that at the Starbucks Reserve stores the coffee is ground and made to order. From being a Starbucks customer who did not know " What  to order Coffee at Starbucks" I was impressed. Along with the tasting which was free we got a half pound bag of coffee. You can take a bag of coffee beans to any Starbucks and they will grind it for you. The Starbucks Barista who ground my coffee even asked me what kind of filter I was using at home to customize the grind for me.

During our presentation I was pleased that Starbucks works with local oganizations to reuse the coffee grounds  for composting and fertilizer. Great contribution towards sustainability,

I am now converted and if I come across a Starbucks Reserve store I am definitely going to try a special coffee.

Also read the articles by my tasting companions :Ja-Naé Duane and Eric Wilkens . Have you tasted any Starbucks Reserve coffees? What do you think ?




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