Doing A Coffee Cupping


The first thing you’ll need to do is have a list of descriptors for a common sensory language. Here are some examples:

  • Trees: cedar, redwood, holly, pine, fir
  • Chocolates: dark, white, milk, waxy
  • Flowers: jasmine, rose, lilac, honeysuckle
  • Nuts: peanuts, almonds, hazelnuts, walnuts
  • Fruits: bananas, blueberries, strawberries, honeydew melon
  • Spices: black pepper, ginger, coriander, vanilla

Never cup by yourself and write about it on the internet. Coffee is social, and cupping coffee at home should be something you share with humans you like. Putting on a cupping at home is a terrific way to get to know what kinds of coffee you like and learn to identify certain flavors and characteristics.

What Will You Need:

  • Weigh out 9 grams of coffee
  • Gram scale
  • Coffee grinder
  • 6 to 8oz porcelain cups to cup with
  • Good-quality water
  • Soup spoon for each taster
  • Empty dish for wet grounds

Grind The Coffees:

Weigh out 9 grams of the first coffee and grind on medium-coarse setting.


Take a whiff of the coffee grounds in the cup with your mouth open, this helps bring more aromas to your palate.

Add Water:

Heat your water to 205 F, using a kettle or other vessel that is used for heating water. Slowly pour the hot water over each sample. Pour to same level in each cup. (17) parts water (1) part coffee, so basically fill to 150 grams of water on scale. Let sit 3 to 5 minutes and place spoons in a tall glass and fill with boiling water.

Smell Again:

After pouring the water, smell each sample again with your nose 1 inch above the cup. Try to note the differences and similarities. Have the aromas of the dry coffee changed in anyway?

Break The Crust:

After the coffees have brewed for 3 to 5 minutes break through the layer at the top of the coffee mug. Simply take your spoon and from the front push back three times pushing the grinds away from you. This releases trapped gases and while your doing this inhale deeply, again with your nose to the cup. Rinse your spoon in the hot water between coffees so you don’t contaminate the samples.

Remove The Crust:

Using two spoons scoop off the top layer (crust) and put into a dish. Try to remove all of the coffee grounds from the surface so they don’t end up in your mouth. Please note that with light roasts, most of the grounds will sink to the bottom, make sure to rinse spoons between coffees.


Take a spoonful of coffee and slurp. This spreads the coffee allover your palate by bringing out all the flavors and aromas. Try to pay attention so you can compare flavor notes with your friends. Keep repeating these steps, noting how the coffee changes as the temperature lowers.

information pulled from The Blue Bottle Craft Of Coffee





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