There is, perhaps, no finer marriage in the world than a fantastic dessert and brewed coffee. It’s an interplay of flavors and textures. But not many people realize that (like wine and food) certain kinds of coffee work especially beautifully with certain kinds of dessert. It depends on the flavor personality of the coffee.
There are essentially three kinds of coffee flavors: nutty, fruity and floral. These depend on where the beans originated. An Ethiopian and a Costa Rican coffee are very different. You can become more sensitive to the nuances of saltiness, bitterness, sourness (or acidity) and sweetness. For example, brewed coffee from roasted nuts tend to be sweet, while others tend to be bitter.
Temperature plays a large role: colder coffee tends to highlight the flavors, while hot coffee tends to have a more “blended” taste. Iced coffees also tend to be diluted with water or mixed with syrups which can hide the taste of the coffee—so if you’re serious about understanding coffee, take your cup hot, brewed and plain!
To detect the flavor of the coffee, take a sip and let it sit on your tongue awhile before swallowing. Try to make out whether it is sweet, sour, bitter or salty. Then take a sip of water to wash the palate and taste your dessert. Again, pinpoint the different flavors and textures. Now take some coffee and some dessert and see how they play off against each other. What a wonderful way to end your food adventure!
So remember that the next time you go to a restaurant! After all, most of us dine out in order to enjoy a full flavor experience; in fact, there are gastronomic delights like seven course meals that promise a full range of tastes and textures. Many of them even offer discount vouchers!
Enjoy the play of these flavors on your tongue—from the appetizer down to the dessert and the brewed coffee. In fact, the more you dine out the more you can educate your palate. This is a great way to learn more not just about brewed coffee but about flavors. That’s a real bargain!
Many fine dining restaurants know this and offer a complete coffee menu. Others will have a house brew, meant to cleanse the palate and settle the stomach. In fact, they consider coffee such a big part of the dining experience that their discount vouchers will include complimentary brewed coffee.