Barista Magazine

JUN-JUL 2018

Serving People Serving Coffee Since 2005

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Page 67 of 107

68 barista magazine SPECIALTY INSTANT-COFFEE is in its infancy—who knows how big it'll be in a few years. Will instant be the effi cient vehicle for bringing specialty coffee to the masses that the industry has been waiting for? Only time will tell. Understanding what's out there and how it comes into being, however, is required knowledge for anyone keeping tabs on this trend. B L A C K W H I T E C O F F E E Cost per cup: $1.67 (available in 6-packs for $10) How they make it: The North Carolina–based roaster purchased a freeze-dryer and developed an in-house process to make its instant-coffee. Coffees used: Black & White Coffee uses coffees from its single-origin lineup—in- cluding a Pacamara variety from Guate- malan producer Alfonso Anzueto. From the expert: "We wanted to focus on deliciousness at a $2-or-less per- cup price tag," says Black & White Coffee cofounder Lem Butler. "Who wouldn't want a Kenyan AA or washed Geisha on an airplane or camping when all they need is hot water?" Cost per cup: $1.75 (for Sudden's bulk option with multiple servings in one pouch) to $2.75. How they make it: First, Sudden brews coffee similar to how it would be brewed in a café, but optimized for higher volumes. Then the company freeze-dries its coffee in small batches at subzero tempera- tures—a process called lyophiliza- tion—to delicately dehydrate it. Coffees used: Sudden partners with specialty-coffee roast- ers; its current partners include Equator Coffees & Teas and Intelligentsia Coffee. While Sudden typically offers single-origin coffees, it sometimes has two-component blends, with farm information and tasting notes pre- sented for each component. From the expert: Umeko Motoyoshi, Sudden Coffee's VP of coffee product, says it took months of experimentation to develop Sudden's brew method. "I researched and hacked settings and repurposed obscure concepts from other food industries until we had a system that made re- ally good coffee, really effi ciently," she says. "That is how we make coffee now, and I am constantly working on new projects to increase quality and effi ciency." S W I F T C U P C O F F E E Cost per cup: $2 to $3.17 (available via subscription or in 6-packs ranging from $16.50 to $19) How they make it: Swift Cup brews high-quality coffees to high-ex- traction concentrates using a proprietary process. The company then freezes the coffee concentrate to subzero temperatures and freeze-dries it to create an instant product. Coffees used: Swift Cup offers a range of coffees, from blends to single-or- igins from Kenya, Colombia, and elsewhere. The company also partners with a network of roasters to deliver instant-coffee for their brands. From the expert: Nate Kaiser, founder of Swift Cup Coffee, says the company has produced over 100,000 cups of high-quality instant-coffee so far, and is on track to double that number this year. "I could see instant becoming somewhat of a new normal as cold brew did a few years ago," he says. "I also suspect the impressive shelf life of instant-coffee will open new doors otherwise deemed shut by leading roasters." V O I L A C O F F E E Cost per cup: $2.87 to $3.20 (available via subscription or in 5-packs for $16) How they make it: The Oregon-based company uses a proprietary process it devel- oped over two years to brew and freeze-dry coffee with the goal of preserving as many of its desired attributes as possible. Coffees used: Voilà partners with quality-focused roasters including Coa- va Coffee, Ruby Roasters, and Augie's Coffee to offer single-origin coffees from Ethiopia, Colombia, and beyond. From the expert: Kent Sheridan, founder of Voilà Coffee, is tight- lipped about the company's process, but elaborates on their philosophy: "Although we can't share much, we've vowed to continue striving for our 'shoot-for-the-stars' goal of eventually creating instant-coffee that is better than the best pourover ever could be by always implementing techniques and technology that improve Voilà in a responsible and conscionable way."

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