My first ever coffee tasting

Last Saturday I had the opportunity to participate in a coffee tasting, as Colombian I really like coffee, here We have one of the greatest coffee quality in the world, in fact Colombia is recognized in the globe for its coffee, that’s why I wanted to share what I have learned in that event.

Disclaimer: I am not an expert in tasting coffee.

Colombian coffee cup

The process of tasting coffee is summarized in two steps:

  1. Smell the coffee.
  2. Taste the coffee.

The idea in first step is to try to identify the components/ingredients of the coffee, try to anticipate the flavor from the smelling, it will be bitter? , it will be sweet?, it will be strong?, take your time for this, smelling coffee is often a pleasure time, enjoy that moment.

Second step surprised me: you have to slurp twice. “Slurp” is often seems like a bad habit, but not in coffee tasting, so please slurp (like a boss). On first slurp, the oxygen will help to prepare your taste buds and also will prepare you to be aware about flavors. On second slurp, the flavor itself will come, keep the liquid in your tongue for a second, try to identify the flavor, was it the same flavor you thought in smelling step?, it happened to me I thought the flavor would be sweet but it was not (that was amazing). If the flavor is strong your tongue will be dried, if the flavor is soft your tongue will be wet, in that way you can distinguish the “tone” of the coffee, You should be aware of your tongue in this step. Also, You can degrade the coffee intensity eating small pieces of dessert between slurps, your tongue will bet wet even if the coffee flavor is strong, I do not recommend to do this anyway (you will miss the magic), but it is a common option, specially if you are not a coffee fan.

I prefer to drink strong coffee, usually on afternoons, after lunch. On weekends I like to drink the ones which are mixed with liquors (amaretto, whiskey, vodka), here in Colombia they are called “carajillos”.

Finally, I would like to tell you that my favorite one, is the one which my father makes everyday, so simple, so intense, so Colombian.

Originally published at on October 26, 2015.