On The Grind Series: What is specialty coffee?

On The Grind Series: What is specialty coffee?

When you browse Malu's website or come across our social media, you probably noticed the term specialty coffee. But do you know what that means? Specialty, premium, high quality are words that are used quite often in stores and restaurants, but is there a standard that determines what it means? Or is it an arbitrary choice of words that a brand uses to stand out?

As it turns out, the specialty in specialty coffee actually means something in the coffee world – and it makes quite the difference! It isn’t just a label; there are standards that must be met in terms of sourcing, quality, and production, to be able to call something “specialty”.

So, what makes specialty coffee special? 

Specialty coffee is the highest grade of coffee available, with a focus on the quality, consistency, sourcing, roasting and brewing method of coffee beans. A rating system was created by the Specialty Coffee Association of America, which gives coffee a quality rating on a 100 point scale. The score is determined by an evaluation of the coffee bean in its natural form, prior to roasting, and every step of the way thereafter until the “cupping” or tasting of the brewed coffee. The coffee must achieve a score of 80 or higher in order to earn the specialty title. 

While terms like premium, fancy, high-end, or high quality may be buzzwords used in marketing for coffee all over the world, the general consensus is that only about 10% of coffee produced today is specialty coffee. 

A cup of Malu specialty pour over coffee is on a table beside a Malu packet and a piece of fresh fruit.

Not all coffee is made equal.

If you were to brew two different beans, one specialty grade and the other non-specialty grade, the exact same way, they would produce completely different results. The specialty grade coffee would smell and taste better and be more consistent, creating a much better overall experience. 

Malu Coffee is specialty pour over coffee. 

With Malu, you get the best of both worlds. You can experience the simplicity and convenience of the single serve pour over method while enjoying the rich taste and aroma of high quality, specialty-grade beans. 

You don’t have to add a bunch of sugar, artificial flavors, and creamer in order to mask any bitterness or “burnt” taste. You can just tear open your pouch, add hot water, and have a delicious cup of specialty coffee the way coffee was intended. Anytime, anywhere. 

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