Whether you are brewing the first pot of the day or getting the fourth round of drinks in for your meeting, there are plenty of things to think about when brewing office coffee in your New Jersey office.
There are variables in the office coffee process that are poised for your manipulation, and today, we are going to help you take control of those elements to achieve a perfect cup of coffee every time.
First: Fresh, Fast & Frequent
Most things we consume are better when they are fresh, and office coffee is no exception. You will want to use the freshest coffee possible to brew with – grinding the beans just before brewing your office coffee will produce the best results.
In general, coffee beans start to lose their luster within seven days of being exposed to oxygen. The loss of freshness increases when the beans are ground and left standing for longer periods, because more of the bean’s surface area is exposed to the elements.
So whenever possible, obtain fresh, whole beans and grind as needed. For those offices using fraction packs, pods or pucks, freshness can be maintained through airtight storage containers.
If you ever wondered why the coffee in afternoon meetings up on the fourth floor tastes dreadful, the answer lies in how long ago it was brewed. Particularly if the fourth floor doesn’t have its own break room and coffee is brewed, poured into a carafe and left in the meeting room occasionally throughout the day, the flavor of your brew degrades significantly over time.
Most people agree, coffee brewed more than an hour ago is just too bitter to enjoy. This is because the oils, tannins and acids naturally present in coffee really don’t like to hang out with oxygen.
The more the coffee is exposed to air, the more these compounds develop to give off an unpleasant, bitter taste. So, make it fresh, serve it fast and refresh those carafes frequently to avoid disappointment.
Second: Learn the Ropes
Office coffee systems differ, and a good craftsperson has to be familiar with their tools, so it is important to learn about the coffee maker(s) you will be using in order to get the best possible results.
There are coffee systems that do virtually everything for you, and others that require you to really think your way through the process of brewing office coffee.
The benefit to working with a seasoned office coffee service provider like Corporate Essentials is that our helpful staff is available to make recommendations on coffee equipment that will fit with your office coffee culture, as well as provide training on the coffee systems your staff uses most.
A few guidelines for meeting common office coffee needs are:
- Follow the recipe: or more importantly, post one for your staff to follow.
- Keep machines clean: rinsing and washing the relevant components of your equipment is a vital part of making a great tasting brew.
- Understand preferences: there is more to making coffee for a colleague than “do you want cream or sugar with that.” Often taking the moments required to truly understand the coffee needs of a coworker can pay dividends down the road and do wonders for your work environment.
- Ask for help: no one can be the master of all things, no matter how hard they try. So, in the event that you do not understand how a coffee system works, need help making or comprehending the drink orders for that 4 pm meeting or just wish there was a better selection of coffee on offer in the office, ask. The experts at Corporate Essentials are only a phone call away, after all.
Third: Great Ingredients
We have already mentioned the importance of fresh coffee in your New Jersey office. But the other ingredients you need to make perfect office coffee are just as important to the end result, so consider:
- Water: your New Jersey office water might be better than you think, so try it. If there are heavy mineral flavors in there or other undesirable tastes, consider a water filtration system for your office coffee systems.
- Filters: using the right filter for the machine is critical to your coffee brewing success. Be sure filters are the right shape and dimension for the basket they are used in to avoid exposing the ground coffee to water for too long as this can amplify unpleasant flavors.
- Coffee: fresh, high-quality coffee is a must for a great tasting cup of coffee. Be sure you are using the right grind for your equipment to achieve the proper flavor, and don’t over (or under) dose the machine. Those recipes exist for a reason.
- Temperature: water that is too hot can lead to over extraction, yielding bitter coffee. Water that isn’t hot enough makes for an incomplete extraction process – neither of these produce the luscious, full-bodied coffee flavor your coworkers are craving.
Fourth: Provide Variety
The best palate pleaser we know of in the coffee world? Variety. There is no one coffee selection, no single brewing process that will please all of the people all of the time – you would be lucky if you could please most of them with a single type of coffee. However, providing a selection of high-quality coffee products and other associated beverages is easier now than ever before.
The joy of coffee is about more than just coffee: it includes hot cocoa, tea, even juices and other cold drinks. Office coffee culture is about reveling in the little pleasures that come from being part of a successful team, the perks of being in the workplace on a gloomy Tuesday morning when the weather has taken a turn for the worse.
It provides a place where teams from across the organization can come together and exchange new ideas, or just shake their heads in unison about how the Devils’ defense just isn’t what it used to be.
Fifth: Cleanliness Counts
Brewing office coffee is a messy business. Even if no one spills or drips or sprinkles coffee grounds on the floor, there are residues building up on virtually everything that the coffee touches throughout the process of brewing.
The result is sometimes visible in that weird, almost oily film you sometimes see on the top of a cup of coffee. It is always, unfortunately, there to impact the flavor of any beverages coming out of the machine.
So clean it, clean it all, clean it often and clean it well. Take care not to scrub plastic parts as scratching them can lead to even more residues being trapped during subsequent brew cycles. And be sure you know what you are taking apart, because someone is going to have to put it back together and brew more coffee sooner than you think.
Whatever your office demands, the course to finding a perfect cup of office coffee can be as easy (or complicated) as you make it, the team of experts at Corporate Essentials is ready to help you on your journey.