So what does third wave coffee mean? Let’s back it up and explain what first wave and second wave coffee are first.
The first wave of coffee occurred with the freeze-drying techniques after the Second World War Coffee became a popular beverage, although the quality was not the best.
The second wave of coffee was the global domination of Starbucks and other chains of coffee shops, and included the trend in home espresso machines. It is characterised by a shift from Robusta to Arabica coffee beans. Coffee quality improved, although there was a rise in adding sweeteners, syrups and other ingredients to coffee to change the taste.
The third wave of coffee is treating coffee like an artesian product, similar to the way we treat a fine chocolate or wine or cheese. It is characterised by single origin coffee and being able to trace a coffee back to an individual coffee plantation. It celebrates coffee for its unique attributes and taste. Consumers are happy to pay a higher price for a better product and one which is produced sustainably and with fair trade methods.
Consumers are in an enviable position in being able to taste some of the best third wave coffee from around the world at their local and independent espresso bar.
If you are in Brisbane, you may like to attend a Bean Brewding Coffee Tour to find out more about the third wave of coffee.