Elderly Coffee Lover - © barstoolsports.com

Coffee Taste-Off Results In Major Upset

You’d think that, the more you pay for a cup of Coffee, the better it would be. But a recent taste test says otherwise. CTV Vancouver provided the tasters. The Canadian Barrista Academy set the stage and provided a panel of tasters with a panel of Coffees… And a convenience store brew blew the boutiques away!

Happy Coffee Drinkers - © osargecoffee.comBottom line: Coffee beauty is in the taste buds of the beholder.

Bless the CTV Network for putting an end to a whole bunch of myths about price versus quality in the Coffee world!

The staff of the investigative show McLaughlin on Your Side partnered with The Canadian Barista Academy to set up six average Coffee lovers with a selection of seven Coffees, two from a local Vancouver roaster, Modus, two from Starbucks and one each from McCafé, 7-Elven and Tim Horton’s. The Coffee samples were served straight black.

After teaching the tasters how the experts taste, Barrista Association rep Jake Moss let them loose on the unmarked samples, and the results were a surprise for everybody.

Hint: Academy founder Les Kuan told the tasters that, “Coffee is not created equal. Poorly roasted coffee, poorly prepared coffee is often bitter.”

What they did…

Each taster tried each of the seven samples twice, in rotation, slurping it from teaspoons the way the pros do. At the outset, some of the tasters were skeptical the would perceive differences between the samples, but all agreed, by the end, that each sample had it’s own distinctive character.

What they found…

All the tasters agreed on the top three Coffees – a remarkable result and one considered definitive by the experts.

The tasters placed a brew, Latif Tanzania from the local roaster, first. The big surprise was the second place choice: 7-Eleven’s 100 Percent Colombian.

Starbuck’s Pike Place blend came in dead last.

Starbuck’s other ‘premium’ coffee, Tim’s and McCafé fell in the middle in a bit of a jumble.

What it means…

First and foremost, the test shows that there’s no correlation between the price of Coffee and it’s quality.

Second, there’s no shame in preferring convenience store Coffee over Coffee Shop or Boutique brews.

Third, the average Joe can, indeed, tell the difference between various kinds of Joe, in spite of what some ‘premium’ Coffee vendors might think.

My take…

Like many niche markets, ‘premium’ Coffee is not all it’s hyped up to be. Coffee drinkers should not assume, because a ’boutique’ Coffee costs two or three times what a Coffee shop Coffee does, that the ‘premium’ cup is ‘better’. I also wish to point out that every coffee drinker has their favourite brew, and the true arbiter of excellence is in the taste buds of the beholder.

~ Maggie J.

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