I am often asked at social events about what I do for a living. Being somewhat of an introverted personality I cringe at the thought of answering. Not because I am embarrassed by what I do, no way, I love my job. It’s because then follows sometimes a line of common questioning, “Wow, how many coffees do you taste each day?” “Don’t you get sick of it?” “How can you do that, the taste of coffee is bitter”. “How do you sleep at night, if I have just one cup in the afternoon I just can’t sleep!” It can get tedious.
No one truly understands what it means to be a coffee expert except other coffee specialists! I will try to explain. This understanding comes from a deeper understanding and love of the product. No, I don’t get tired of my role in coffee. It offers something different every day, whether it’s a sample of new crop coffee from one of 70 plus producing countries or the latest batch of espresso coffee which must be tasted to confirm the quality before sale. Coffee is a product of nature and by that fact alone throwing different tastes frequently, the great challenge of my role is to keep things balanced, harmonious, tasting the same day in day out with a naturally changing raw material, coffee. This is neither boring or mundane, it’s a challenge to all my learning, knowledge developed over the cupping bench day after day year after year, over 37 years in fact.