timothyrobertgraham asked: I'd like to ask the community of coffee professionals, how do you evaluate coffee? On the day to day, when green buying, or when evaluating a roast what do you focus on? Do you actually use a Cupping Form like the SCAA's form, or do you have you're own informal or specialized criteria? I'm a little less concerned with defects/taints/faults and more interested in what you look for in an excellent coffee seed. Thanks!
This is a great question!
I’ve always used a variety of systems to evaluate coffee day to day, depending on the situation and need. The most thorough way to evaluate a given coffee is using the SCAA form, which helps give a complete picture of coffee: both defects and attributes. Often, I use a sort of “screening” cupping, based on the SCAA categories, which focuses on attributes (fragrance, aroma, acidity, clean cup, sweetness, body, aftertaste) rather than detailing defects or technical aspects (a defective or non-interesting coffee might simply be rejected unscored).
There are also production cuppings (designed to evaluate roast levels, consistency, and trueness to intention) and descriptive cuppings (focused primarily on building descriptive/experiential language); as well as blend cuppings, cuppings intended to evaluate coffee age, etc.