The global coffee craze in 2018

The humble coffee bean travels from farmer, roaster to brewer – each one has a hand in the aroma and flavour of the final product in your coffee cup.

Industry experts talk of the third wave of coffee appreciation. That means there is growing interest in the entire coffee process from bean to cup in much the same way as we appreciate the finer points of wine, tea or chocolate. It began decades ago but is now literally going viral.

Mirroring the rise in artisan breweries, the number of artisan coffee bean roasters (microroasters) across major cities of the world has ballooned in the past few years.

A generation ago, most high street coffees came with a choice of only milk or tea. This progressed to espresso, cappuccino, latte and flat white and all the variations thereon but even that is no longer sufficient.

Savvy customers today want to know the variety of bean, the region, the name of the producer, the altitude of the estate, whether the beans are washed or dried and how and when they are roasted. The story of coffee, like wine, offers an engaging narrative that is appealing to a growing audience.

The coffee trend is getting wackier by the day with the rise of brands like Bulletproof coffee, which was originally devised by Californian entrepreneur and author of The Bulletproof Diet, Dave Asprey. The two magic ingredients that make a regular cup Bulletproof are a tablespoon of unsalted butter from grass-fed cows (a rich source of heart protective Vitamin K2) along with a concentrated form of coconut extract Asprey markets as Brain Octane Oil.

Then there is Four Signmatic and their mushroom coffee. Made from ‘medicinal mushrooms’ the company claim to be producing the ‘world’s healthiest coffee’, which provides all the benefits of your regular cup, minus the nasty side effects.

And finally we have Café X in San Francisco, promising “precision crafted specialty coffee in seconds, the way the roaster intended,” Cafe X thinks that anything a human can do, its machines can do better.