Behind the Beans - Crafting Spring Equinox

Behind the Beans - Crafting Spring Equinox

What is a blend?

Blends are an important offering in our lineup here at Sightglass. A blend involves marrying multiple single origins to create something unique, perfect for its intended purpose, whether it will be used for drip, espresso, or to be enjoyed during a particular season. This leads us to our growing seasonal blend program, where we spend countless days and hours developing blends that are distinctive for each season. With spring just around the corner, we are excited to introduce our new Spring Equinox Blend.

Introducing Spring Equinox:

While we have already introduced highly popular seasonal blends such as our Winter Solstice and Summer Solstice, Spring Equinox is a new addition to our menu. As is customary for our seasonal program, we took the time to reflect on what we desired from a coffee during the springtime. The season conjures images of blooming flowers and the surroundings turning greener, inspiring us to craft a coffee with floral and earthy qualities. Additionally, our decision to name this blend "Spring Equinox" reflects the equal duration of day and night during this time. Let’s dive into how we made the Spring Equinox blend!

Selecting The Right Coffees:

We initiated the construction of this blend by carefully selecting origins that impart the qualities we sought. Our journey began with coffees sourced from Colombia, Burundi, Papua New Guinea, Kenya, and a few other countries. Each coffee origin contributes its own unique characteristics, and what adds to the intrigue of blends is the multitude of variables that come into play, shaping a harmonious flavor profile. Elements such as altitude, soil composition, and the coffee processing method all play pivotal roles in achieving the perfect spring blend, with each origin lending its unique characteristics to create a fresh taste experience. Fortunately, with the guidance of our highly experienced team, who dedicated hours to cuppings in our lab, we were able to narrow down our selections and set ourselves on the right path.

Sampling and Tasting:

Now that we have narrowed down the single origins we would like to use,the next step in the process is to determine the roasting level for our coffee and decide the percentage of each single origin we want to include in each blend. This means heading to our lab and to start cupping multiple roast levels and blend recipes, made with ratios like 70/30, 60/40, and 50/50. We have our work cut out for us! Through sample roasting, we can accentuate specific elements of the coffee we want to shine, as well as enhance the depth and body of the blend. Manipulating the coffee with heat, air, and development time in the roaster is a crucial aspect of perfecting this blend, and we entrusted our expert roasting team to ensure that Spring Equinox is just right. We were delighted and surprised when we discovered that a 50/50 blend of Colombia and Papua New Guinea, roasted on the lighter side, was an absolute slam dunk. We couldn't be happier! It delivered the floral rejuvenation of spring, showcased by Colombia, while Papua New Guinea contributed the grassy, earthy qualities we were seeking. We realized that this blend is versatile—it's perfect for enjoying sunny spring days with birds chirping, but it also complements the rainy days that the season tends to bring, allowing everything to bloom.

Deciding on tasting notes, roast profile, & final product

The finalization of the roast profile is determined through multiple rounds of roasting and cupping. The roasting team employed various methods to manipulate the blend, presenting our quality control team with multiple options to achieve perfection. Returning to the cupping table, we were determined to find the right fit. After several rounds of refining, we were confident that we reached the ideal roast profile—one we would proudly present to our customers.

One of the final stages in the process of building a blend is developing the specific tasting notes that we provide on the front of the bag. This is a crucial decision factor for consumers and ultimately shapes the flavor experience in each cup on Spring Equinox. We hit the drawing board, fine-tuning our palates to best convey the experience we discovered in this newfound blend. The mouthfeel and balance of the coffee pleasantly surprised us, each of us encountering similar yet unique flavors. After some deliberation, we settled on Orange Blossom, Tamarind, and Strawberry as the key tasting notes.

We want to highlight the significant effort and care that went into creating Spring Equinox, along with all our blends here at Sightglass. With the introduction of this new coffee, our seasonal program is growing, and we sincerely hope you find as much enjoyment in it as we did in developing and sharing it with you. We value the time and dedication invested, staying true to the important values on which we initially established this business.

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