How to choose the right coffee for your café?

Planning to open your own café, but you’re puzzled which coffees to offer? These are our 3 tips how not to get burned when choosing the right coffee.

There are a lot of cafés – be one of the best!

Opening an own café is one of the common dreams of beginner entrepreneurs. They usually know exactly where the café should be or how it should look like, however, they leave the choice of coffee and technologies for the last moments. How to turn dreams into reality and open a café with a real good coffee? These are our 3 tips.

cappuccino on a café table

#1 Start with choosing your coffee

The word café is derived from coffee. Yes, we all know it, however, we are seeing it quite often that there’s a café to be opened in a few weeks, but the owner still doesn’t know what coffee is going to be served to the customers. Therefore, we recommend to all future café owners and operators to always start with choosing the coffee.

Coffee is an elemental raw material, which will create returning customers. While a designer café interior is surely important, it should go hand in hand with the quality and taste of the coffee served.

If you’re new to the HoReCa business and you don’t have sufficient experience leading a café, or your café has only one grinder we suggest starting with ‘classics’: that is a coffee with universal flavor. Generally speaking, Robusta coffee blends are the most versatile and European customers are returning to it for its delicate bitter taste. Thanks to its long-lasting thick crema, these blends are well-liked also between baristas – so, it’s a win-win choice with which you can’t go wrong.

espresso in a glass

If you have a bigger café with two or more grinders, we’d absolutely recommend adding something more original, interesting, or exotic to the mentioned ‘classics’. It’s up to you and your clientele, whether it’s going to be some fruity 100% Arabica or a decaf blend.

TIP! We recommend having one universal coffee, that’s going to be your staple drink and always having a novelty coffee on your menu. This way you can draw in a wider range of customers, but also offer a variety of tastes at the same time – which is priceless in terms of marketing.

business consulting card

#2 Always choose your coffee based on your customers’ preferences

Your clientele is an inseparable part of your café concept. Do you know what type of people are around your café and so who could be your potential customers? Are they students, moms on maternity leave or managers? The ideal coffee should be aligned with the location, concept, and the customers of your café.

Whichever coffee you choose, always be sure to ask your customers if they’ve liked it. If they didn’t, it must be changed, and this change must be communicated towards your customers clearly and in time. This is the only way to ensure them you are there for them.

It is usually the owner or the operator of the café who picks the coffee, however, they can have completely different preferences than their customers. If your café is situated near a business center with a lot of different people, it’s recommended to choose the most universal taste, that is darker roasts without acidity. In case your café is in a bigger city with a lot of tourists or near schools, you can afford lighter roasted coffees, like the El Salvador or the Ethiopia, or just test various recipes.

coffee and food on a table

Last but not least, it’s wise to have your coffee menu aligned with your food menu as far as flavors go. If you have a patisserie or a café with a constant offering of cakes and cookies, we recommend having a bold, bitter coffee without any acidity. On the contrary, you can have something exotic and even acidic if you have an Asian restaurant. Most importantly, always have the customers’ preferences on your mind.

TIP! Don’t forget that the taste of your coffee is heavily affected by the quality of the water used. Water modifiers, such as filters or water softener systems can help you not only achieve a steady taste of coffee drinks, but also a protection of your coffee machines from limescale and thus to prevent frequent servicing.

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#3 Focus on the quality and freshness of your coffee

Low priced coffee is very tempting but also very treacherous. Freshly roasted specialty coffee from a local roastery has a lot more to offer, than any commercial coffee from abroad, which may have a lower price, but the lower price can be often directly linked to lower quality input materials or can be subject to purchasing bigger amounts of coffee, which then just sits in warehouses.

It may seem that specialty coffee is much more expensive when compared to commercial coffee. However, when you boil it down to the price of a cup of coffee, the difference is suddenly minimal. The difference in taste is, on the other hand: huge.

By buying coffee from a Slovak roastery you don’t only invest into a high-quality material, but also into a high-quality relationship with your customers and suppliers. If you start cooperating with a local roastery, you get a reliable partner, always keen on giving advices choosing the right coffee, helps you getting the right machines, getting regular servicing of your machines, but most importantly will provide you with a reliable supply of fresh roasted coffee. So, no more storing of old coffee and dealing with varying tastes, only great cups of coffee.

freshly prepared ristretto

Don’t be afraid: talk openly to your customers about what coffee, from which roastery and the reasons for choosing that coffee for your menu. On one hand, you can explain the basic differences in taste and quality, on the other hand you can show off your knowledge and thus ensure them you only provide the best for your customers. This is the exact attitude that will get you a loyal and returning clientele.

TIP! Always try to offer something extra, to attract your customers to return. For example: if they’ve liked a certain coffee, always have a few packets of ground coffee of the same kind, so they can purchase it and take it home.

Be one of the best cafés with specialty coffee from Ebenica

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