Specialty Coffee, which is a much higher quality coffee than ‘gourmet coffee,’ refers to coffee that scores 80 points or above on the scale of 100, according to the Specialty Coffee Association. Only certified Q-Graders (Quality Graders) are qualified to determine if the coffee falls within the specialty quality range. The coffee must be free of most primary defects, meaning that the beans must not be broken or discolored, and the stems, leaves, and other waste must be removed.

Specialty coffee beans typically flourish only in certain high altitude regions of the world, requiring the most ideal conditions and special care at each stage of development.  Much care is given to the production of specialty coffee throughout the entire process, from planting to roasting.

These coffees are known for having more vibrant, unique, and exotic flavors than standard coffee. Almost always, specialty coffee farmers select Arabica beans, which require greater care for survival than the popular Robusta beans. Arabica beans, with their many varieties, generally display greater flavors than the Robusta beans.

Brazil is a county full of diversity in its culture and its coffee and is the number one exporter of coffee in the world! In fact, for the last 150 years, Brazil has been responsible for a third of the global coffee production. Coffee farms cover over 10,000 square miles, where the environment and climate provide ideal growing conditions.

Brazilian coffee is famous for having caramel, nutty, chocolatey tastes, with milder acidity. The specialty coffees grown in the Brazilian highlands offer a wide variety of unique and delicious flavors.

Is it Difficult to Brew Specialty Coffee? 

Thanks to today’s incredible technology, brewing specialty coffee at home does not need to be difficult or take very long to make.  

You can always use a standard coffee maker and still enjoy delicious coffee, or you can choose to step up your game a little.

An espresso machine or a single cup coffee machine with a built-in burr grinder (AKA ‘bean to cup’) are simple to use. The speed of these machines is comparable to a Keurig.

Other suggested options that offer great quality in a relatively short time are so worth it! Visit our Brewing Methods page for more information. 

AeroPress (1½ – 3 minutes)  

French Press (4 – 6 minutes) 

Pour Overs (2 – 4 minutes)

If you love those complex fruity nuances that light roast specialty coffee can offer and enjoy using pour overs – Bossa Nova

If you enjoy a smooth creamy coffee with hints of chocolate and have a fondness for the French Press – Ipanema

For those of you who enjoy a bold and rich darker coffee and for those who love espresso shots – Samba