Waiter Training Course
Tea and Coffee Knowledge
“Natural abilities and interpersonal skills are more important than formal education and high IQ.”
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The history of coffee is long and dates back to the 6-7 century. There are many stories about how and who discovered it. One is about an Ethiopian goat herder named Kaldi. He discovered coffee when he noticed how excited his goats became after eating the red berries from a coffee plant.
The earliest credible evidence of either coffee drinking or knowledge of the coffee tree appears in the middle of the 15th century, in Yemen in southern Arabia. In the beginning, in Yemen, the coffee beans were roasted and brewed just the way they are today. In the city of Moka, the coffee was kept as a treasure. However, they were not able to keep it long. From Mocha, coffee spread to Egypt and North Africa. By the 16th century, it had spread through the Middle East, Persia, and Turkey. From the Muslim world, coffee drinking spread to Italy, then to the rest of Europe, and coffee plants were transported by the Dutch to the East Indies and to the Americas.
Coffee plants grow within a defined area between the tropics of Cancer and Capricorn, termed the bean belt or coffee belt.
The beans we use today to make coffee are the seeds of the fruit. The coffee plant produces coffee cherries, and the beans are the seeds inside. The structure of a coffee cherry can be compared to a grape. The parts of the coffee cherry are:
- Outer skin
- Green coffee bean
Types of Coffee
There are 124 different species of coffee plants, but only 2 of them are used to produce coffee beans.
Coffea Arabica (Arabica) – This species makes up about 60%-70% of the world’s market for coffee beans. Arabica being grown on steep terrain makes mechanical harvesting impossible. Hand-picking ensures a better quality of selection. The Arabica beans are bigger, oval, and with dark green color. The middle cut is curved (S-form). Grows at an altitude of 900 -2000m. The plant is more delicate and with lower resistance to pesticides and diseases. It contains between 0.8% – 1.4% caffeine. It is sweeter (8% sugar) and with more lipids (13%-17%). Arabica beans taste sweeter, with more herbal, fruity notes.
Coffea canephora (known as Robusta) makes 30% – 40% of the world market. The beans are smaller with a circular form and straight cut. This plant grows at a lower altitude from 0 to 700m and is more resistant to pesticides and diseases. Caffeine – 1.7% -2.5%, sugar 5%, Lipids – 7%-11%. The Robusta is more used for the preparation of instant coffee. Since they have less oil and sugar, they often have more natural, earthy, heavier flavors.
Coffee processing methods
The coffee Processing method is the second most important factor after the roasting on building the final cup profile.
Natural – Natural Processing is when coffee beans are dried within the coffee “cherry.” The basic approach is to harvest ripe coffee cherries. Then spread them out on a concrete patio and let them dry slowly, covering with tarps to block the sun and delay drying if necessary, for 2-3 weeks or more. Once the fermenting fruit has imparted just the right amount of bright citrus and berry notes, the farmers use machines called “pulpers” or “hullers” to mechanically remove the fruit. The final step is to give beans a little rinse. Then, they get graded and bagged for shipping.
Washed – The washing process is widely used across Latin America and East Africa. It requires the cherry and mucilage surrounding the parchment to be removed using friction, fermentation, and water.
The ripe cherries are picked, delivered to a wet mill, and loaded into a de-pulping machine, which forces the beans out of the cherry. At this stage, the beans are contained within the pulp of the cherry, also known as the mucilage. This sticky mucilage is composed of natural sugars and alcohol. It contributes massively to the coffee’s sweetness, acidity, and overall flavor. After that, the beans are put into fermentation tanks for around 12-24 hours, dependent on temperature. The next step is for the beans to be washed. This can either happen in tanks of clean water or in channels. At this point, they are taken to a drying bed, or tables and they are left there for 10-22 days. This method brings a bright and clean flavor to the coffee taste.
Semi washed – In this process, the coffee is picked, de-pulped, and then partly sun-dried until the moisture content of the beans reaches 30%-35%. This process is most commonly associated with producing countries in Indonesia. Indonesian beans (and particularly Sumatran beans) are often associated with woody, earthy or spicy flavors that are thought to result from this unique process.
WHAT IS TEA – EVERYTHING THAT COMES FROM THE PLANT CAMELLIA SINENSIS IS CATEGORIZED AS TEA!
There are two varieties of this plant that have the most significance to tea production:
Camelia Sinensis ” Sinensis “( with small, sharp leaves) and
Camellia sinensis ” assamica ” ( with large, meaty leaves). Those two are essential for tea production! What is not so well known is that the White, Green, Black, or Oolong teas are produced from Camellia Sinensis! The difference comes from the following:
- Cultivation process
- Region of production
- Production process
To prepare the highest quality teas, only the buds and the first two leaves of the plant are used!
The harvest of those first leaves is called “Imperial Pluck” or “Two leaves and a bud.”
Camellia Sinensis is a plant that contains caffeine; therefore, every cup of tea contains caffeine.
It is good to know that the caffeine in the tea brings a smooth, waking effect to the people who drink it, contrary to the caffeine in the coffee.
What are Herbs
The herbs are often called tea, but this is wrong!
Herbs like Chamomile or peppermint are not made from Camellia Sinensis and therefore are not tea!
This herb liquid should be called “Infusion ” and not tea!.
Most herb brews are caffeine-free with minor exceptions like Mate (Paraguayan tea) and are helpful.
- GREEN TEA: Wither, Fixation, Drying. Tea Processing – After the harvest, the leaves are treated with an influx of heat to stop the oxidation process! This helps the leaves to keep the enzymes they contain! Different regions have different ways to prevent oxidation. In China, the heating process is produced in the pan.
- YELLOW TEA: Wither, Fixation, Piling up, Drying. Tea processing is exactly the same as green tea, but after the heating, you have to leave it to rest rolled up in a clothe or paper. Then we continue with the processing! Flavors: soft, sweet and floral.
- WHITE TEA: Wither, Drying – It’s processing less than all other teas. The leaves/buds are harvested and dried under the sun. It is rich in antioxidants. Flavors: sweet, grassy, delicate.
- OOLONG TEA: Wither, Roll, Oxidation, Fixation, Drying. The oxidation process is started and then stopped at exact times. The leaves are constantly lightly shaken and rubbed. This helps the separated juice to react with the oxygen from the air. By carefully controlling this process, the producers can bring the Oolong tea closer to the Green Tea or the Black Tea.
- BLACK TEA: Wither, Roll, Oxidation, Drying. The leaves are folded so that the juice reacts with the oxygen from the air and achieves complete oxidation. Then they are fixated. Flavors: malt notes, chocolate, caramel. Full body.
- PUERH TEA: Wither, Fixation, Roll, Fermentation
Withering – IT IS A PROCESS IN WHICH THE LEAF BECOMES FLACCID AND LOSES WATER
In the traditional process, fresh leaf is spread by hand in thin layers onto trays or sections of coarse fabric called tats. It is then allowed to wither for 18 to 20 hours, depending upon several factors that include the temperature and humidity of the air and the size and moisture content of the leaf.
Fixation – FIXATION IS ALSO KNOWN AS SHĀQĪNG
It is done to stop oxidation at a certain level. This is accomplished by slightly heating the tea leaves. This deactivates their oxidative enzymes and removes unwanted scents without altering the flavor of the tea.
Drying – it is done to “finish” the tea for sale. This can be done in many ways; however, baking is the most common. At this stage, heat inactivates the polyphenol enzymes and dries the leaf to a moisture content of about 3 percent. It also caramelizes sugars, adds flavors to the finished product, and imparts the black color of fermented tea.
Rolling – The withered leaf is distorted, acquiring the distinctive twist of the finished tea leaf, and leaf cells are burst, resulting in the mixing of enzymes with polyphenols. The traditional method is to roll bunches of leaves between the hands or by hand on a table until the leaf is twisted, evenly coated with juices, and finally broken into pieces.
Oxidation – refers to a series of chemical reactions that result in the browning of tea leaves and the production of flavor and aroma compounds in finished teas. Depending on the type of tea being made, oxidation is either prevented altogether or deliberately initiated, controlled, and then stopped.
Fermentation – THE KEY STEP IN THE PROCESSING OF BLACK TEA
The fermentation of tea leaves alters their chemistry, affecting the organoleptic qualities of the tea made from them. Fermentation affects the smell of the tea and typically mellows its taste, reducing astringency and bitterness while improving mouthfeel and aftertaste.
The tap water in some regions is very hard, and it is recommended to be used filtered water for the tea. Every type of tea has recommended quantities of water and tea leaves for the best test of the product. Essential Notes: A tea bag of high-quality teas could be used a couple of times to prepare a cup of tea. For example: when drinking Oolong in a traditional tea ceremony in England, the first cup of tea is poured away. Then, the guests consume the second dip. The tea leaves are only awakened with the first dip, and they release the perfect flavors with the second dip! Some high-end tea producers recommend that the first dip be around 90 seconds; the second dip be about 60 seconds! To achieve perfection, the teabag should be first dipped in cold water 100ml. Then we should pour the boiling water(250ml) to reach the perfect temperature of 70 degrees Celsius. To achieve 80 degrees Celsius, we use first 80ml cold water and then 250 ml boiling water. To achieve 90 degrees Celsius, we use first 50ml cold water and then 250 ml boiling water.
Important terms in tea service
CHA – means tea in Japanese
Genmaicha – green tea mixed with roasted rice
SENCHA – green tea in Japanese, It is 3/4 of the tea production in Japan SHINCHA (new tea) – this tea is made from the first tea leaves of the year KUKICHA – it is made from the handles of the leaves, and it is very low on caffeine
FIRST FLUSH – the first harvest of the year( Feb – Apr), so-called Imperial Pluck
SECOND FLUSH – the second harvest of the year ( Jun- Jul)
DARJEELING – it is a region in India which gives the name of the tea CYLON – it is the old name of Shri Lanka, one of the important regions of tea
ASAM – it is a region in India
FLUG TEA is called the first and freshest tea of the year. It is delivered with airplanes to the biggest fans of the tea and offers extraordinary taste and flavors!