Most people who are serious about coffee drinking know that single estate and single source coffees are higher quality than blends for the most part. But is it enough to choose single estate or single source coffee and leave it at that? Below are some other consideration to think about.
Some experts say that more than single origin coffee, single estate is growing in popularity across the US. Cafes are trying to provide coffees that are more exclusive. Many importers and brokers are bringing in coffee containers that feature smaller packages of single source and single estate coffees, and not hundreds of bags of one type. Roasters are looking to provide unique coffees, much as wine producers and estates want to provide very specific wine varieties to their most selective customers.
Right now, some experts note that it is smart to ask about post coffee harvest processing, as well as roast and country. These are the major elements of single source and single estate coffee that will help you to find the best coffees by flavor and not just where the coffee was grown.
Experts also have weighed in on the type of coffee that you should choose depending upon the method in which the coffee is being put in the cup.
For filter coffee, choosing between single estate or source, and blend often comes down to how adventurous you are feeling. If you want your coffee to be more reliable and stable, then a blend is a good choice. If you always want to explore different flavors of coffee, going with a good quality single origin or single source could fit the bill.
For espresso, choosing between single origin/estate and blend is still about choosing between stability and adventure. For espresso, blends are often developed for the purpose of balancing out the flavors. With milk-based beverages such as espresso, blends can be preferred by some people. They may provide the best base of flavors that can be expanded upon and complemented by the milk. But some single origin coffees can work, especially with the right milk to coffee ratio.
Now that you know a little more about single estate and single source coffee, what should you do? If you like adventure in your coffee drinking, make sure you ask your barista about the best single source and estate coffees that they have that week. For those who are more in the mood for stability and predictability in the flavor of the coffee, ask for the best blend.