An opportune visit to York’s famous restaurant 31 Castlegate led to a full on coffee tasting and blending session with an interesting outcome. Laurence Beardmore, owner of the *York Coffee Emporium*, York’s Independent Artisan Coffee Roasting Company explains,
_”I’d previously met with Roy (Spence ““ Restaurant Manager) at 31 Castlegate and realised he appreciated good coffee, so we set up a tasting session on one of his rare day’s off!”_
After a bumpy start, the perfect blend was found, along with help from Nick Julius; Owner Chef of 31 Castlegate. Says Roy;
_”The tasting didn’t start off well – we have been used to a very strong and dark roasted coffee. Laurence’s coffee’s whilst flavourful initially just didn’t seem to offer the same punch”_
_”This is often a problem”_ states Laurence _”As a roaster optimising the roast and flavour profiles of the coffee is our absolute focus but we often find ourselves pulled in different directions – A medium roasted coffee will taste superb without milk, sweet, acidic then a little cocoa bitterness for example, but if you then add foamed milk sometimes those tastes can disappear”_.
Nick is delighted with the results York Coffee Emporium have shown as he says _”We work hard in this restaurant and our standards are very high, all our dishes are cooked using the finest local ingredients and the menus are written to utilise seasonal produce. For me coffee is just as important as the food, I have very exacting standards and often the last thing my customers taste is the coffee, it has to be right “_
Most coffee in Restaurants & café’s in this country are drunk with milk in some form or other and so many roasters have resorted to over-roasting the coffee to enable a coffee taste to be experienced. Laurence says _”It breaks my heart to see good coffee roasted to death destroying all the subtle attributes!”_
York Coffee Emporium is now supplying 31 Castlegate with coffee and there are future plans to introduce a variety of coffees often matched to a dessert dish.
_”It was a great outcome for both parties”_ states Laurence _”I’m both pleased and proud to have my coffee served in such a fantastic restaurant”_