If you know anything at all about Steadfast, you know that we take beverages seriously. Whether it’s a craft cocktail on a Friday afternoon, or craft coffee on a…….basically all the time.
We know how to stay hydrated, and we extend that courtesy and expertise to our clients in the exact same way that we share our marketing expertise. In this post, we’re going to cover how we keep everyone caffeinated, as our meticulous attention to detail with something as small as client beverage preparation is indicative of our detail-oriented nature as a whole.
Coffee is, without a doubt, the fuel that powers this ship.
For most of us at Steadfast, craft coffee bookends our days. We have some as soon as we arrive, and just before leaving, and about seventeen times in between. So, we’re going to break down exactly what methods we use to brew coffee, what our setup looks like, and what the differences between each method are.
First things first, we have to talk about coffee beans. You can have all the sophisticated equipment in the world, but if your coffee beans are stale, your coffee is going to suck. That’s a totally objective, indisputable fact. We order all of our coffee from local roasters like Oak Cliff Coffee in Dallas, and Avoca Coffee in Fort Worth. With local artisan roasters, you can always trust that your beans are fresh and ethically sourced.
Similarly, with Steadfast you can always trust that your design will be ethically sourced. Coffee beans have a shelf life of about 2 weeks after being opened, and once they’re ground that shelf life drops to about 30 minutes. That includes pre-ground coffees we remember as kids. You’ll notice that fresh beans make coffee that’s delicious black.
Adding sugar and cream is generally done to cover up the taste of stale/misbrewed coffee, but if you’re using fresh, natural coffee coffee it only serves to supersede the natural taste of the beans. If you made it through that paragraph without being blinded by our pretentiousness, we’ll get to the actual brew methods.
Let’s first talk about the drip coffeemaker method. This generally serves 8-12 people at a time, and is our most commonly used method for that exact reason. For this, we use a Bonavita 8-Cup Drip Coffee Maker, with #4 bleached coffee filters.
Leading up to this, we measure out beans on an AWS kitchen scale, and grind it with a fine grind on a Baratza Encore Burr Grinder. The important thing about our coffee maker, in particular, is that it’s one of the only table-top drips that can maintain optimal temperatures of coffee flavor extraction.
Too hot or too cold, and you’re missing out on very important flavor notes.
If we’re looking to make closer to 4 or 5 cups of coffee, we’ll go with a Chemex. The Chemex is a beautifully designed product that is purpose-built to maximize the flavor of coffee. We use the exact same scale and grinder for the Chemex, but set the grinder to a coarser grind.
In general, the Chemex brews slightly sweeter, and has a slower extraction than the drip coffee maker. Due to this slower extraction, the flavor profile of the coffee is exceptionally deep, bringing out more complex flavor profiles lost in the drip method. The one downside, due to the manual pouring of water over the Chemex, is human error. While the flavor profile is complex, it’s also very inconsistent if the person brewing the coffee is inconsistent.
Lastly, if we’re just looking to brew a couple servings of coffee, we’ll use a french press.
Most people are at least marginally familiar with the french press device, but fewer people know what separates it from other brew methods. The biggest key difference is that the french press is a paperless filter method.
This means that the coffee oils that are normally caught in the paper filter actually make it into the glass. Again, the grind and measuring device are the same, with the grind setting similar to that of the Chemex. The unfiltered nature creates a uniquely full-bodied coffee with a richer mouthfeel. The taste is strong and smooth, and is distinct from the other two methods we employ.
The importance of exercising care when presenting the client with their meeting beverage is high. What you serve them sets the tone for the meeting, and handing them a cup of gas station coffee while telling them how you hand-craft their marketing pieces has the potential to seem disingenuous.
By serving a beverage that is better than what they can get at most coffee shops, you exhibit the thought that you as an agency put into every single decision and detail, no matter how small.
If you’re interested a marketing partnership with a team that appreciates details and thrives on craftsmanship, contact us today for a free consultation.