Earlier this month, I attended a five-course degustation dinner with Nespresso and renowned chef and local culinary ambassador Josh Emett to mark the official launch of the Master Origin collection – five new and permanent coffees, inspired by the land.
Throughout the evening, which was filled of five delicious dishes inspired by the coffees unique story, Nespresso’s New Zealand Coffee Ambassador Mitch Monaghan delivered the evening alongside Emett to explain Nespresso’s ability and incredible process for how these coffees were sourced from the world’s finest coffee growing regions — Colombia, India, Indonesia, Nicaragua and Ethiopia. Together the duo explained how each coffee has been on its own unique journey of discovery, resulting in individual aromas and tastes reminiscent of that country of origin.
Over the last couple of weeks, I’ve continued to enjoy and taste the new range while learning more about the fascinating techniques, methods and traditions that differentiate these coffees from one another. Today I’m going to share a little bit about what I’ve discovered, along with my favourite Master Origin coffees.
When Nespresso embarked on its journey to create these new curations, coffee experts spent a great deal of time working with local farming experts in each of the five regions; Indonesia, Colombia, India, Ethiopia, Indonesia and Nicaragua, learning about each country’s innovative and demanding farming practices.
In Ethiopia for example, local coffee farmers meticulously rake coffee beans every hour by hand to ensure even drying; in Colombia, the typical harvest time was pushed to the limit — each coffee cherry was left on the tree, risking fermentation until it was exactly the right shade of deep purple to be picked.
Whereas in Indonesia, farmers used a traditional and exceptionally local wet-hulling motion, whilst in Nicaragua, a sweet approach was taken musing the ‘black honey’ method which involves leaving the coffee bean in its natural fruit layer whilst it is drying allowing the coffee bean to soak up the natural sugars.
And meanwhile, in India, the coffee sourced is exposed to an age-old monsoon technique that was once a natural occurrence when coffee was transported by boat. The beans experience rough high winds and take on lots of moisture from the sea salt, which make them swell and reveal a unique spicy flavour.
The Master Origin coffees range from 4 to 11 in terms of intensity. And while I prefer Nespresso coffees with a high intensity, I’ve found that the less intense Master Origin coffees are very enjoyable due to their robust flavour. What’s more, the coffees can be enjoyed as both an espresso (40ml) and lungo (110ml) offering lots of versatility in the type of coffee I prepare for myself or visitors. When combined with milk, their unique aromas blend seamlessly into a creamy cappuccino, velvety flat white, or my favourite, a delicious piccolo.
The first of my two favourite Master Origin coffees is Indonesia. With an intensity of 8, the “wet hulled” method used to produce Indonesia creates a distinctly rich, velvety texture. To fully savour the wild, woody taste I like to prepare this coffee with just a dash of milk.
My second favourite is India due to its high intensity and full bodied, spicy flavour which has been achieved by a challenging post-harvest ‘monsooning’ technique done by Indian coffee masters. A powerfully complex and aromatic coffee, I find this makes the perfect flat white or piccolo.
Styling and photography by Michelle Halford for TDC
The five coffees which will also be a permanent addition to the Nespresso coffee range are now available from Nespresso boutiques nationwide and online.
Remember to always recycle your used Nespresso capsules by dropping them of at one of the recycling points nationally. Find your closest recycling points by visiting www.nespresso.com.
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