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Caribbean Coffee Culture

Coffee culture is fascinating. Different in Puerto Rico from St Maarten in many ways but essence is the same, that’s my conclusion after aspending 2 weeks in and around  San Juan. They favor more bitter cups of coffee in the Caribbean, IMHO. Dark roasted (French or Italian) blends of Latin American beans, some strengthened with Robusta beans.

The body is always unbalanced, though. Coffee is rarely ground on demand so it spoils quickly in the heat and humidity. In Puerto Rico they favor the espresso and cortadito whereas in Sint Maarten they favor plain filter coffee and lattes or flavored coffee with syrups. Saint Martin goes for espressos and cappuccinos but people often overheat the milk here.

Pack of coffee beans
Uncommon “medium roast” coffee from Puerto Rico

It’s just painful to taste all the uncleaned portafilters and old grinds together with the “spoiled” grinds that have been sitting there too long. Such a shame. Keeping up the spirit for a good coffee. Even if one in a hundred.

cappuccino cup
Cappuccino

By Christian

Coffee has been my life line for decades, it used to wake me up whenever my parents would make a pot. Having been in IT for 30 years and drifting towards Food&Beverage since 2006, I've slowly but unknowingly narrowed my field of flavors and odors from chef in the kitchen to sommelier at the dining table to barista with coffee since 2016. SCA Certified since 2017. With a background in chemistry, understanding the brew methods was very easy for me. Combined with an insatiable curiosity in knowledge I strive to learn even more about the world of coffee. Currently building up experience to participate in the Dutch Brewers Cup 2020 and if things go the way I hope, perhaps WBC 2023 erm make that 2024!