Level up coffee week
Putting the 'special' in 'specialty'
October 15, 2021
On the first weekend of each month, Homeground Coffee Roasters brings in rare and interesting coffees on both the espresso machine and filter bar as part of our Level Up Coffee Week experience. Since the first edition in March 2020, barring periods of dining-in restrictions, it has become something we look forward to.
The idea for Level Up Coffee Week was first conceived from the desire to introduce coffee of exceptional quality to the everyday coffee drinker, from the day-to-day customers at Homeground Coffee Roasters, to fellow coffee professionals alike.
As fellow cafe-hoppers and home brewers ourselves, we often only manage to enjoy unique coffee experiences like these once in a long while. In most places, these unique coffees are usually roasted and served as filter coffee, where the nuanced and complex notes of each coffee are allowed to shine. Yet, we wanted these coffees to be as accessible to everyone as possible. Knowing that the majority of people drink coffee made with the espresso machine as regular long blacks and lattes, Level Up Coffee Week intentionally carries offerings on both the filter bar, as well as the espresso machine.
The end of 2021 brings us closer to a full year since the first iteration of Level Up Coffee Week. To reflect on the progress we have made with the Level Up Coffee Week series, we polled some of our staff on their favourite Level Up Coffee experiences thus far.
Nora, Cafe manager
"My favourite Level Up Coffee Week coffee was the filter roast of the Potosi from the May 2021 edition. That was the month that the same Sidra varietal from Cafe Granja La Esperanza was roasted separately and served as both espresso and filter.
I personally like to brew filter coffees on ice with the Aeropress, and this coffee delivered an amazing sweetness that was well balanced with its acidity, and had a smooth mouthfeel that was even more accentuated when brewed in the iced format.
With typical coffee beans, they start to turn stale a few weeks after the roast date. However, with this coffee, it got even better when I tried brewing it one month after the roast date, and it was honestly quite mind blowing!
What makes it one of the best coffees was that it was easy to brew and really consistent across brewing methods – on my recommendation, many of my friends had bought it, and each and every one of them found it greatly enjoyable."
"Before I started working at Homeground, I was not that much of a coffee person. However, having the opportunity to drink the coffees that we serve here at the cafe, the one coffee that really piqued my interest and opened my eyes to the world of specialty coffee was the Cerro Azul that we served for Level Up Coffee Week in April this year.
It had a wide breadth of flavors, from bright lemons to juicy blackberries, and was very smooth and sweet. Sipping the coffee at the different temperatures highlighted different flavour notes of the coffee, and I really enjoyed this development in the taste profile as the drink slowly cooled.
The Cerro Azul was such a complex cup of coffee, and I had never had something like that before. It was unlike my past experiences of drinking coffee, and it was what made me decide to want to learn the art of brewing coffee."
Nicholas, Cafe manager
"May’s Level Up Coffee Week that featured the Potosi Sidra from Cafe Granja La Esperanza ranks highly on my list of memorable coffee experiences. In particular, I absolutely loved our take on the Sidra on the espresso machine.
In our Homerun format of serving the coffee, we got to enjoy the coffee both as a black, and a white. The espresso was jam-like and sweet, rich with a myriad of fruit profiles – exactly as I like an espresso to be – and I loved how it then transformed into a creamy cup of white coffee when served with milk.
Where typical coffees often contain berry-like or tropical fruit sweetness, the taste profile of the Potosi when served with milk was evocative of a velvety watermelon milkshake. As weird as it may sound, it made for a really refreshing taste that I would not have thought that a cup of white coffee could offer.
On a final note, it tickles me to no end knowing that when said in Chinese, the distinctive watermelon taste profile that made this coffee really unique, 西瓜 (xī guā), sounds really similar to the coffee varietal itself – Sidra!"
At Homeground, we want to encourage everyone to drink better coffee. Level Up Coffee Week furthers our goal by creating an awareness and appreciation for coffees that are at the forefront of innovation in the specialty coffee industry today.
In the long term, we are hopeful that as the appreciation and demand for specialty coffee grows, coffee producers will be inspired to produce higher quality coffees. Hopefully, this will help to propel the specialty coffee industry to even greater heights, as more exceptional coffees are grown and shared with the world.