Video Offers a Peek Into Specialty Coffee Culture
Screen Cap: thethrashlab/Youtube
Here's a video documenting the frankly insane level of dedication specialty coffee producers put into each cup of their brew. Think of it as "Jiro Dreams of Sushi" but with coffee beans instead of fish and about half as pretty because giant roasting machines aren't nearly as attractive as a wood bucket with an octopus in it.
For instance, LAMILL Coffee director of coffee Thomas Hodges compares developing a blend to, "Getting to know a person. It's not until you've spent a lot of time together that you really get to know somebody."
The actual equipment used in the commercial roasting of coffee is actually fairly fascinating as is the process of "designing" a blend. As they point out, you're roasting a seed here and there is no way to unroast it. If you've ever wondered what the practice of "cupping" is in regards to coffee, this video will explain that. Basically it looks a great deal like wine tasting but with the added complication of brewing the beverage as you're tasting it. They sniff the beans, the grounds, the grounds after water has been added but before it's stirred and then a succession of tastings as the coffee steeps.
The documentary group that produced this video, Thrash Lab, has also created a few other food related videos. They've previously interviewed butchers and food truck owners, all primarily in California.