Café de l’Ambre is offering something that I had never imagined: aged coffee. Why did I take for granted the conventional thinking to the effect that freshness is important? There are aged teas (pu-erh, aged oolongs), aged wines, aged cheese. Why did I not think that green coffee beans could also be aged?
Café de l’Ambre is not the world’s best drip coffee. It is not the juiciest, the most complex, nor does it have the deepest or purest flavor. However, it is very good, significantly different and worth a special trip. I had 5 different coffees over 2 days and they vary widely between them. Drift magazine reports that “every cup is poured through a Nel drip – a flannel, sock-like filter that slows down the brewing process. The grinds for a Nel drip brew are coarser, and the temperature is cooler. The resulting coffee exhibits a remarkable velvety texture and is believed to showcase a wider range of flavors than pour-over-style coffees. Refining, perfecting, and maintaining these subtle details in coffee has been Ichiro’s primary pursuit for the last six decades”. The owner is believed, says Drift, to hate tea ceremony as it emphasizes form over flavor.
It is successful in making you confront your unjustified reliance on accepted wisdom, and inspire you to think for yourself, experiment for yourself, and offer a product or service to the world that represents who you are, that is an extension of you.
No matter how much you know about coffee, there is more to learn. But more important than learning new things is the willingness to put into question the received wisdom. You must always think for yourself, when you know nothing and when you know everything.
Why do we assume fresher beans are tastier?
Address: 8-10-15 Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo (12-10pm)
The only true voyage of discovery would be not to visit strange lands, but to possess other eyes.
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