The Brew Log: Your Coffee Palate, Visualized

Tyler Tate
3 min readJun 21, 2016

Last week we introduced Ratings: Remember the Coffees You Love. This week we’re bringing you the the second installment of three related product announcements.

Have you seen a flavor wheel for wine or beer? Well, coffee has one too. In fact, earlier this year World Coffee Research (WCR) published a groundbreaking sensory lexicon for coffee, identifying 110 distinct flavor attributes. Based on this new lexicon, the Specialty Coffee Association of America (SCAA) then developed a new and improved flavor wheel for coffee.

We’re now using similar attributes to both categorize coffees on, and to give our customers insight into the characteristics underlying their own personal taste preferences.

The SCAA’s Coffee Taster’s Flavor Wheel, based on research by WCR.

The science of categorizing coffee

Thanks to the WCR lexicon and SCAA flavor wheel, there is now an authoritative classification system for the flavor attributes of coffee. This means that, with the help of the tasting notes our partner roasters provide us, combined with our own quality grader’s cupping notes, we’re able to reliably tag each coffee with its appropriate flavor attributes.

And flavor isn’t all: we also annotate each coffee with its roast profile, processing method, country and region of origin, any certifications, and more. This enables us to convey all that information to you when you view a coffee on — but it doesn’t stop there.

A screenshot of our behind-the-scenes interface for annotating a coffee.

What if…

What if you meticulously kept track of every coffee you ever drank — including all the flavor characteristics present in each coffee, and whether or not you liked it — analyzed all your data, and then visualized the results.

First, it would be a ton of work; but if anyone actually exerted the effort, they would be rewarded with a snapshot of their coffee palate, a sort of Myers-Briggs of their coffee personality.

Your Brew Log is exactly that.

Meet your Brew Log

Your Brew Log pays attention to the coffees you order and rate (and to a lesser extent the ones you view or add to your Brew List), and with every action learns a bit more about your likes and dislikes. The result: an ever-improving insight into your coffee palate that empowers you to discover the characteristics behind the coffees you love — from flavors and aromas, to roasting styles and origins.

How does it work? The Brew Log uses machine learning techniques to analyze the attributes present in your favorite coffees. The more coffees you order and rate, the more it learns about what you like (and don’t like).

Unlock your Brew Log

The Brew Log can be unlocked by ordering your third bag of coffee through — this ensures that it has enough initial data to learn a bit about your preferences. If you’ve already ordered three or more coffees, you can access your Brew Log today.

Go to the third product announcement in this series: Personalized Recommendations: Coffees Tailored to You.

Ready to explore your own coffee palate? Head on over to to subscribe to your choice of roasted-to-order, single-origin coffee shipped free from unique roasters.