How Can I Use Coffee Taster’s Flavor Wheel? Coffee Taster’s Flavor Wheel is a resource for evaluating coffee sensi least created in partnership with SCA (Specialty Coffee Association)and WRC (World Coffee Research). This article will focus on several ways to use the taste circle effectively, according to SCA guidelines.
You don’t need to be a professional cupper to capture all that’s in your coffee cup. All you need is a circle of flavors (a print will be better) and a little time to focus on enjoying, referencing and you’ll start exploring a whole new world of taste.
Use Coffee Taster’s Flavor Wheel in 8 Steps
Through the understanding of Coffee Taster’s Flavor Wheel, you will see the feat of development, and the progress of the flavor classification made by SCA. But how to use the coffee flavor circle isn’t as complicated as the way it’s been studied. The scientists’ effort is to create the simplest support tool so that anyone can access the most complex flavor structures of coffee. With the 8-step sequence and some small ideas from SCA scientists, you can “read” the taste in your coffee cup – And let’s start right here!
However, it should be noted that the coffee flavor circle won’t tell you whether the coffee is good or bad: It depends on you and your preferences. It will help you enjoy a cup of coffee and explore the complexity of both taste and taste.
Step 1: Read and devour, mull over
The coffee flavor circle represents a panorama, a kaleidoscope of the taste of coffee. And while you can’t remember all the words on it (or some of them are unfamiliar), don’t hesitate to print a big copy on the wall. Get used to the original concepts of taste, then combine it with regular practice – This is a patience exercise, and you need to commit to perseverance to succeed.
No one can determine the direction without understanding the symbols on the compass. Coffee Taster’s Flavor Wheel is the same – it’s just more of a word. Therefore, you can download the original (in English) of SCA or the Vietnameseized version (in the post-Vietnamizing the Coffee Flavor Circle)for research during the practice.
Step 2: Taste the coffee properly.
Coffee flavor circles can be used in random coffee tastings or professional cupping. In both situations, we need to prepare the coffee carefully, observing the coffee at different stages: The aroma escapes when crushed, the aroma escapes when the coffee is soaked in water, and the taste fills the palate when drinking coffee (see also Fragrance /Aroma in Cupping Technique Part 3).
Another thing to note is that “Flavor” is a combination of taste and smell, and Taster’s Flavor Wheel is based on basic taste attributes (things perceived by the tongue) and pure aroma (things that can only be smelled). However, the flavors we perceive are a mixture of senses: like lemon, a combination of sourness and lemon essential oil; or sweet, bitter taste with characteristic flavorings that create the taste of molasses.
Therefore, you have to analyze and synthesize the flavors from all stages of preparation, combined with “taste memory” to make the most correct judgment.
Step 3: Start at the Taste Circle Center on Coffee Taster’s Flavor Wheel
The design of Coffee Taster’s Flavor Wheel follows 3 floors from the inside out. The most common taste descriptions are located near the center and are more specific when in turn going out to the outer layers. Depending on your ability to feel, you can stop at any floor. This is the most important function of the coffee flavor circle when from the simplest flavors you can name the flavors much more complex.
For example, you can spot fruit when tasting coffee from Ethiopia. Moving through the fruity part of the circle, you are faced with a choice: the flavor recalls fruitiness, dried fruit, citrus fruit, or something else. If you decide whether it’s a citrus fruit, you need to clarify the description: is it grapefruit, orange, or lemon?
Step 4: Read Lexicon on Coffee Taster’s Flavor Wheel
As mentioned, coffee flavor circles can be used by professional researchers, but most of us aren’t trained in this method, but you can still study Coffee Taster’s Flavor Wheel’s World Coffee Research Sensory Lexicon system.
Each attribute has a definition and a reference section, which is more specific to it. These references are available from online sources. To read more, take notes. Train your sensory memory.
You can download Sensory Lexicon from PrimeCoffee or visit the notbadcoffee website to look up the terms, when you click on one of the vocabularies, it will display the corresponding “flavor description card“.
Sensory Lexicon version 2.0 was announced in October 2017 – is a reference system available globally for 24 coffee flavor attributes such as Sour, Bitter, Salty, Pineapple, Acetic acid, Butyric acid, Brown Spice, Almond, Vanillin, Floral…
The vocabulary has identified the 110 flavors, aromas, and textured properties present in coffee while also providing references to measure the intensity of those properties.
Step 5: Check the relationships
With the knowledge of sensory attributes from Sensory Lexicon in mind, you can start tasting a cup of coffee and start over at the center, this time judging based on your “sensory memory” with a specific attribute.
One note in analyzing the taste on the layers of Coffee Taster’s Flavor Wheel is that the properties of cells are arranged at different distances. If the two properties are connected through a very narrow slot – that means that SCA scientists think these properties are closely related to each other. Conversely, if the distance between the properties is too wide, they have less similarity.
The wider the distances to the center of the circle, the less the taster finds similarities between the properties from the outside in. This can be useful as a remedy for comparing the experiences of different tastes.
For example, the same Citrut Fruit (Fruit) but GrapeFruit and Organre are similar groups and slightly different from Lemon, Lime. In that gas, Fruity is completely different from sour/fermented.
Step 6: Refer to several different sources
Despite being a massively researched reference, Coffee Taster’s Flavor Wheel isn’t the only classification that describes the flavors of coffee. You can refer to other taste materials for more objective and accurate assessments. Counter Culture Coffee’sflavor classification, for example.
However, it should also be known that every attribute in sensory lexicon WCR has a reference tool (glass jars containing a condensed scent) some can be easily ordered online(flavor active recommended by World Coffee Research).
The reference tools are provided as the standard for measuring that attribute, and give you a more realistic experience – you can taste and smell those references to guide yourself to those flavors in coffee.
Step 7: Think of color.
It’s no coincidence that the coffee flavor circle has the same colors as you see. Our visual consciousness is closely related to taste. For this reason, we often use the term taste buds to combine with colors such as sour blue, sweet yellow.
With this perception, scientists from the SCA have linked the terms to colors that represent clear properties. By observing the colors and conscripting you can completely recognize that “something brown” can be chestnut (Hazzelnut) or Chocolate, the bright sour taste of lemon with yellow or orange…
Step 8: Use your own words
The great thing about these tools is that they form a basic common language for coffee lovers. The existence of the standard taste circle means that all coffee experts have the same research base, have the same material in the lab and tasting shop.
At the same time communicate with each other based on a unified set of terms. However, Coffee Taster’s Flavor Wheel is still based on science and research, it is also a sensory tool and very like every other human product, which makes it imperfect.
Imaginative descriptions and vivid terms are good, but sometimes they make communication more difficult. Therefore, in certain contexts, focusing on the common language – illustrated in this circle is a simple & consistent way for those who want to communicate about coffee.
Finally, don’t hesitate to do it again and again. Similar to the Cupping coffee technique the workout will define your level. The more effort you make, the easier it will be to determine the taste through Coffee Taster’s Flavor Wheel.
It’s simple, isn’t it? No need to be a professional Cupper you can also practice for yourself great experiences with your favorite coffee cup. And, there are other ways to use Taster’s Flavor Wheel from cuppers, baristas, or anyone else. You can share to develop better skills together.
Source of reference:
- www.scanews.coffee/ How to Use the Coffee Taster’s Flavor Wheel