Tasting coffee with the wizard

By Lucia September 10, 2014

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George Howell reminds me of a wizard. He has bright blue eyes and white hair, and he has a magical understanding of the atoms and aromas and textures that go into coffee.

Ayr and I went to George Howell’s roastery last week with the goal of tearing apart our coffee methods (hot and iced) and seeing if we can make them better. We want to apply science to the things we’ve already been learning by direct observation of customers. Specifically we’re looking at the effect of various factors (grind size, water temperature, volume of coffee) on taste, body, mouthfeel.

It was a surprise to all of us that a lot of this stuff has never been studied in serious ways. So we’re embarking on a bit of an adventure, and we’re really excited to have George and his team at the helm. Over the course of the next few weeks, we’ll be posting on our findings, and testing some of them on you at the restaurants. First up: is cold brew coffee evil?

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