We offer the VINCENTS restaurant chef Martins Ritin's story about coffee, which was published 15 years ago in the book "Feast with Martins".
Coffee is the everlasting value! Read this story!
Enjoy the excellent ILLY coffee at VINCENTS Espresso bar on the way from Riga to Jurmala – in K. Ulmaņa gatve 114/3, as well as in the restaurant VINCENTS in Riga, 19 Elizabetes. You can also order and buy coffee machines MITACA and coffee capsules at VINCENTS Espresso bar (order here).
What is the first of what the people think in the morning when they wake up? Well - the second thought. The majority think about the same thing - coffee.
Coffee is already known from the sixth century. Its origins, most probably, can be found in the region of the Red Sea, in Ethiopia. In the Arab countries in the XIII century, coffee was the everyday drink. Coffee was brought to Ethiopia by the traders, but the Christians called it the devil's drink. But only until the Pope Clement XIII has enjoyed a cup of coffee, and began to state exactly the opposite. In Vienna, Paris and in London in the XVII century, the coffee houses became popular. There, the politicians, artists and other intellectuals gathered and came together, and it is necessary to say that till the present moment, nothing has been changed there. In the eighteenth century, the people began to grow the coffee trees in Java and soon in other Caribbean countries.
Unfortunately, in Riga still there are not many places where you can drink a cup of good coffee. For the sake of comfort, one can say, that the Englishmen can not make a good cup of coffee as well, however everywhere in Spain, where I drank coffee - and it happened in many different places - everywhere the super-quality coffee was served to me.
The coffee trees are being grown in about 50 countries around the world. However, there are three times more methods of preparing coffee. The frost is the most dangerous for coffee; therefore the coffee trees grow only in the tropical zones - between the Tropic of Cancer and the Tropic of Capricorn.
The overseeing (supervision) of the coffee plantations is a very responsible job. The coffee beans grow on the small trees, the fruits of which are the coffee cherries. They are being picked when still in bud, but they are not yet beans. Coffee is picked by hand, just like grapes. There are several methods of how the coffee beans are dried and preserved. After then, the beans are sorted according to the quality and sent around the world, when they are still green. Usually the bean roasting is carried out in the country in which the beans are being sold. The beans are being roasted to extract the acidity from them, while the process adds the coffee its unique aroma and taste. Finally, coffee is being ground - both the fine-ground and coarse-ground coffee, depending on what coffee preparing this ground is meant for. The coffee taste and quality characteristics are different not only among the coffee trees grown in different countries. It may be different also among the coffee tree fruits, which grew in the neighboring coffee plantations. Just as it is with the grapes, olives, tea, and potatoes. The coffee bean quality is influenced by the land, its topography, climate and other factors. There are four varieties of coffee plants in the world, but only two of them are being sold for the coffee preparing. The most important is Coffea arabica. It is grown high in the downhill mountains, and this coffee has got the best coffee aroma and taste. Arabica makes up 70% from the coffee in the world. The second variety is Coffea canepbora, from which the coffee is being produced under the title Robusta. It grows lower in the mountains, where it is much easier to cultivate it. It is lacking of tenderness and fineness. This coffee costs twice cheaper than Arabica, and it is mostly used for the instant coffee preparing. This coffee most often is being sent to the countries where there are no laws on coffee quality evaluation.
Brazil is the largest coffee bean producer in the world. It produces all the varieties of beans, but most of them are used for the instant coffee preparing. The Brazilian coffee is soft and juicy, Full Bodied – with the overall taste.
The Colombian coffee Rounded Bodied is good - the taste is balanced with acidity. Good is the Medium Roast coffee - medium roast - and Dark Roast - dark roast - coffee. The most widely-known Colombian coffee is Medellin Excelsoar with delicate, nut-flavored taste, and Lebanon Supreme coffee with the wonderful flavor and aroma.
The Costa-Rican coffee is of high value due to its elegant richness of taste and its gentle acidity. It is a very popular breakfast coffee. The Guatemalan coffee is famous for its piquant taste and the specific roasting. Indonesia is famous for the Javanese and Sumatran coffee. Both of them have a strong flavor, but the Sumatran beans have got a mild chocolate taste. Never mix up the Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee with the Jamaica High Mountain coffee. The first is my favorite coffee. I lived in Jamaica for one year and have got accustomed to the coffee. I also took home to England rather many of these beautiful beans, and my father liked this coffee so much, that he did not like any other kind of coffee anymore. The Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee has got a pleasant, mild flavor and acidity, in combination with the strong nut-flavored taste. It is the most expensive coffee in the world - it is served on special occasions or to especially dear guests. There are many good, well-known coffee varieties - Hawaiian, Kenyan, Mexican, Papua New Guinean and other. One can speak about coffee as endlessly and for as long time as about wines. When I hear saying that this coffee is a Finnish coffee or that it comes from Germany, I silently laugh, because there coffee is only pre-packaged. To make a cup of good coffee, one should take into consideration many factors. The most important of them is the water for coffee making. Unfortunately, in Riga, there is no suitable water for making coffee. When I make coffee, I use only the bottled water Evian.