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How our coffee is made

 

FROM BEAN TO CUP

Discover Nespresso's coffee expertise
It's how we ensure a perfect Espresso, cup after cup

Nespresso came up with a simple but revolutionary idea: to create the perfect cup of espresso coffee with an exquisite crema, tantalising aroma and full-bodied taste, as generations of skilled baristas have done, yet with maximum convenience. This spirit of innovation is still alive in our continuous quest for excellence at all stages of coffees creation, from the cherry on the tree to your perfectly extracted cup.

FARMING

Responsible sourcing tastes best

Our approach necessitates another level of selectivity which concerns the sustainability of the coffee tree and coffee world in general.

To address the issue of coffee’s future, we created the Nespresso AAA Sustainable Quality™ Program in 2003 in collaboration with the NGO Rainforest Alliance. This program enables Nespresso to safeguard the future supply of the highest quality coffee, while paying farmers a higher income and protecting the natural environment.

But our commitment goes beyond this; it is about a long-term relationship and continued loyalty to the coffee farmers in the program.

culture AAA

HARVESTING

Coffee is a cherry

Cherries of the same tree will ripen at differing rates and therefore should be picked at different times. In order to pick only correctly ripened fruit, the majority of coffees used for Nespresso coffees are harvested by hand. Though costlier, this guarantees the best quality, since beans that are too green, or overripe, are eliminated.

Not all beans are created equal…

The better the grading, the more consistent the beans, the more even the roast, and ultimately, the more balanced the cup.

Ensuring quality through all coffee journey’s stages, from farm to cup, requires us to carry out repeated and systematic physical and taste checks: before packing coffee at origin, before the shipment by sea or air, and again, upon arrival. Taste (or "cup") testing ensures only the finest, cleanest coffee is selected.

In order to pick the best beans, Nespresso rigorously selects and tests them, to satisfy the most demanding palates. It is a gold prospector's work that can lead our Coffee Experts to some of the most remote areas of the world.

BLENDING

The alchemist's art

We develop our coffees in a blend composition much like a form of magical alchemy. Having practiced these skills for over 25 years, our master blenders understand the transformation of fragrance and flavours. Nespresso panel cuppers are intensively trained, tested, certified and re-certified every 3 months for their ability to identify quality. Sensory evaluation looks beyond physical attributes, linking taste to variety, terroir and care in cultivation.

After meticulous selection, the Nespresso Experts blend certain coffee origins, to ensure their aromatic profiles complement and enhance one another. These blends, based on a combination of expertise and inspiration, form the basis of the unique personality of each coffee.

The subtle blending of varieties reveals a wealth of flavours, each contributing remarkable characteristics. The two main commercial coffee species, Arabica and Robusta, bring distinct characteristics to a blend. Coffees of both types must pass physical, sensorial and sustainable standards tests of the highest order. Where Arabica brings fineness, acidity, clarity and elegance to the cup, Robusta adds heft, body, texture and pure coffee aromatics. Nespresso uses between 90% to 95% Arabicas with some Robustas to either add spice to selected coffees, or create unique personalities in others.

ROASTING & GRINDING

Terroir-specific roasting for terroir-specific aromas

Roasting and grinding are vital stages towards creating a coffee as here we reveal the full flavour and aromatic potential of green coffee beans.

Coffee develops the full potential of its aroma during roasting. Correct roasting depends on finding the time, temperature and other parameters best suited to a blend, thereby allowing origin characteristics to be fully expressed. Each coffee has its own specific roasting process designed to bring out the intrinsic characteristics of each origin.

Depending on the roast technique used, the same coffee can acquire vastly different in-cup results. By knowing the character of our beans, we roast each one of them with the goal of optimising and maximising its flavour.

Origin, type, shipment, batch… all these variables impact roasting. Our expert understanding ensures consistency cup after cup, year after year, irrespective of seasonal fluctuations.

Made-to-measure grinding for optimal extractions

Ultimately, grinding is what allows coffee’s aromas to be released. The grind size influences the rate at which the coffee flows into the cup. Here again, various profiles are created to ensure an optimum in-cup result. These operations are fastidious and require precision and expertise, for optimum in-cup quality.

ENCAPSULATION

Capturing freshness: safeguarding aromas for your cup

After grinding, the coffee is packed in an aluminium capsule that protects ground coffee from contact with the air, light and moisture.

Processed and packed under inert atmosphere and hermetically sealed in, the Nespresso capsule guarantees consistent coffee quality by locking in the freshness of the coffee’s flavours and its 900 aromas for 12 months.

Aluminium was also chosen because it is infinitely recyclable and thus not only maintains quality and flavour integrity, but is not a spent resource once used.

Compared against the production of primary aluminium, the recycling of aluminium products consumes as little as 5% of the energy and emits only 5% of the greenhouse gases. As part of our vision, Nespresso has already put in place a used coffee capsule collection program in New Zealand, available to all of our Nespresso customers.

TASTING

Serve the ultimate expression

In the final quality step to the customer, extraction, Nespresso’s complete quality system ensures that finished capsules interact with machines in such a way as to extract all the flavours that have been so carefully sought, selected for, roasted, ground and packed… In other words, to serve as the ultimate expression of all that has gone before.

Our brewing systems operate at the right water temperature, quantity and pressure for each coffee design, so they deliver our quality promise in the cup.

Discover our range of Professional coffees for your business

OUR PROFESSIONAL COFFEE CAPSULES