In just a few days many of us will be ringing in the New Year with family, friends and a few glasses of Champagne. But have you ever wondered why champagne has bubbles to begin with?
Before we can fully appreciate a finely brewed cup of coffee, we must take the laborious task of extracting important flavoring materials locked within the bean. The easiest way to do this of course, would be to place the entire set of beans in hot water and agitate - eventually after much time the flavoring material would extract into solution, but this method would soon prove impractical.
The transformation from raw bean to finished product is perhaps one of the more complex stages in coffee production.
If you take a lot of green beans and smell it, it hardly has any of the characteristics that we would typically associate with roasted coffee. Yet once roasted, the raw materials within the raw bean undergo a significant transformation to give rise to hundreds of new compounds that we can appreciate.
Unlike products other food products which require minimal amounts of thermal processing, coffee undergoes a dramatic chemical changes before it even exhibits any hint of its aromatic complexity. For this to occur, we must pass the coffee over the fire, so to speak, and transform this relatively boring bean into a bean with a myriad of complexity.