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Beginner's Guide to Cupping - The Guide
Beginner's Guide to Cupping
feedback: (13) comments | read | write Guide Posted: Sunday, March 21, 2004
Author: Mark Prince
Cupping for Beginners
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This mini guide is written by Geoff Watts of Intelligentsia Coffee & Tea and Mark Prince. It may not be reproduced, reprinted, or redistributed without permission.

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A word from Geoff Watts, Director of Coffee, Intelligenstia Coffee:

I’m a firm believer that understanding is developed through the act of comparison. Learning to talk about the character of a coffee from a particular origin requires that one have some frame of reference, and if the goal is to figure out what makes a coffee from Kenya great it is important to know what makes it different than other coffees. In other words, what does it mean to taste like a “Kenya”?  What tastes distinguish a Guatemalan coffee from a Nicaraguan?

By evaluating coffees in a comparative setting and with an inquisitive, reflective approach one can learn to identify the most essential flavor traits of coffees from different origins. The goal should be to build a reference library of flavors and taste sensations that can become a background against which one can examine new coffees. Over time a cupper will begin to associate particular flavors with geographical regions and different botanical varieties of coffee.  Eventually, a phrase like “this tastes like a bourbon from the Santa Ana region in El Salvador” can have some real meaning.  It is important to remember, though, that dogma has no place in coffee tasting.  Every time I think I’ve got a region figured out, a coffee comes along that shatters my expectations.  Keeping an open mind and sense of curiosity is absolutely essential to becoming an accomplished taster.

“There is no mystery to cupping, only endless intrigue.” – gbw

Why People Cup Coffee Why People Cup Coffee
We give you a short introduction on what cupping is about, how it is used professionally, and what you, as a potential home-cupper, can expect.
Tools of the Trade Tools of the Trade
A short primer on the tools needed to cup coffee in the home, and some discussion on what coffees you should consider evaluating.
Step By Step Guide Step By Step Guide
The nuts and bolts part - how to cup coffee in a step by step way.
Taste and Process Taste and Process
Descriptions and discussion on the tastes and process involved in properly evaluating coffee.
Cupping Forms Cupping Forms
Some practical forms to get you going on cupping in a more systematic, organized way.
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Guide Sections
Arrow 1. Introduction
Aarow 2. Why People Cup
Aarow 3. Tools and Coffee
Aarow 4. Step by Step
Aarow 5. Taste, Process
Aarow 6. Cupping Forms
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