STiR coffee and tea magazine

Volume 3, Number 5

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56 STiR tea & coffee industry international G ermany is a nation of largely home and office coffee drinkers just beginning to experience specialty brew. "On average, Germans drink 2 cups of coffee per week in cafés, 2 cups in bakeries, 1 cup in fast food outlets and 1 cup while travelling. This is far less than the quantity they drank at home (14 cups per week) and at work (9 cups per week)," ac- cording to Jeffery Young, managing director of Allegra Strategies, a strategic research consultancy that keeps a close eye on beverage retail. Germany is currently experiencing a growing interest in the specialty coffee scene. According to Allegra Strategies, in the past few years there has been rapid growth, exceeding 10% in sales of specialty coffee in German cities. While still a very small fol- lowing, the demand for gourmet and single-origin specialty coffee in Germany shows positive momentum, according to Allegra's research. Quality coffee was hard to come by with mostly dark roasts and no traceability be- fore the specialty coffee movement, Ralf Rüller, owner of The Barn Coffee Roasters, explains. "The quality beans that were available were either very old or very expensive," he said. The Barn roasts its espresso and filter single-origin coffee. Rüller bought a Synesso Hyrda built in Seattle, Wash. He makes his espresso with steamed milk from a local biodynamic dairy and pours lightly roasted filter coffee through a Hario V60. "Germans are used to buying everything cheap and talking about price rather than quality, including their coffee," he said. "So, I think the perception was to not pay a lot for coffee," said Rüller. Ralf Berlit, who owns the No Fire, No Glory coffee shop in Berlin, agrees. Even today, the majority of coffee in the supermarket is still robusta, said Berlit. Although 100% arabica is available, it is not usually high quality arabica. "It's typical industrial coffee," said Berlit. "It's roasted at high temperatures. When you open the bags, you have oily beans, cracked beans, and almost black beans. That's what people are used to. That's what they think coffee looks like." Two things account for the growth of specialty, said Rüller. It took Starbucks to persuade the Germans to pay a higher price for coffee and the emergence of a local food movement. Third Wave Coffee Reaches German Shores Photo by Tiffany Tee Tran Barista Richard Sargent, Café CK Preparing Espresso at Café CK, Berlin Latte art at Silo Coffee, Berlin By Anne-Marie Hardie

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