Raising a cup to water. (Image by Alice Collins)

Raising a cup to water. (Image by Alice Collins.)

The team at Anglia Coffee Solutions  is very pleased to have been featured in the East Anglian Daily Times’ environmental supplement, namely “ea environment“. The theme of the monthly column carried in the supplement is “what water means to me” and Trevor Collins, founder of Anglia Coffee Solutions and Dolchenza Coffee was delighted to have been selected to answer the questions on the subject in support of the feature.

Please click here to view a PDF of the feature published in the Saturday edition of the East Anglian Daily Times and entitled “Water plays a vital role, from crop to cup”.

Trevor’s full Q&As can be seen below:

1.  Please can you give me a bit of background about yourself and Anglia Coffee Solutions. What is the main ethos of Anglia Coffee Solutions and what services do you offer?

I have worked within the coffee industry for 21 years and eventually took the plunge and set up Anglia Coffee Solutions in 2013. Since then the business has flourished and our team is growing. Anglia Coffee Solutions supplies coffee and vending machines as well as all the related products to local businesses, cafes, coffee shops, restaurants, hotels and leisure centres; we also provide full installation and a fully managed service that includes maintenance, cleaning, replenishments and technical cover. Anglia Coffee Solutions is based in Suffolk and particularly serves the East Anglian region and has strong local values. What underpins our ethos is putting customer care first and we enjoy operating primarily on a face-to-face basis so we truly know our customers.

This year, Anglia Coffee Solutions has also launched its own range of coffee, namely Dolchenza Rich Roast, which is our very own secret and unique blend, produced in East Anglia. The Dolchenza range includes traditional filter coffee, a light roast filter coffee, a decaffeinated variety and we’re also proud to be offering a fair trade option too. The Dolchenza beans have a deep, chocolaty, intense flavour with both earthy and spicy cocoa notes and a rosewater finish with excellent body that perfectly cuts through milk. Dolchenza makes a serious cup of coffee and I am thrilled with its progress. It is literally flying off the shelves and our hospitality clients report that they have received many compliments on the Dolchenza Rich Roast brand too – even the Italian tourists approve happily describing the coffee as “belissimo” (beautiful) – so we’re thrilled!

2.    Why did you set up Anglia Coffee Solutions?

I set up Anglia Coffee Solutions because I felt there was a gap in the market for a supplier that offered a local service and truly catered for the small as well as the large businesses alike – I run a business too and truly understand what life as a business owner is like. I also felt driven to develop our own brand of coffee and the Dolchenza Rich Roast beans are not only infused with flavour but also the knowledge acquired from years of experience in the coffee industry.

3.    The piece is mainly related to water, so please can you tell me a bit about how water specifically affects you?

Anglia Coffee Solutions could not operate without water – no H2O would mean no cup of coffee and so all the related supplies would cease to matter.

4.    How much of an effect does water have on your industry – could your business operate without water?

The coffee industry would simply not exist without water. Obviously planting and growing the coffee bean, which is actually the seed, requires water. Then the beans are carefully harvested – it actually takes approximately four years before freshly planted coffee plants are mature enough to bear fruit, known as “cherries”. Once the fruits have been picked there are then two potential methods for processing the cherries. Firstly, the dry method, an age old approach which is still used in countries where water is scarce, involving allowing them to dry out in the sun. In this case water could spoil the process so the cherries are carefully covered at night and during rainfall. Secondly, there is also the wet processing method for which there are several steps and water is imperative for most, if not all, of them – for instance water is used to separate the pulp from the bean and also to reveal the ripest beans as lighter ones float to the top while the heavier, ripe ones sink to the bottom of a channel of water. Our Dolchenza beans are processed using a mixture of washed and natural processes – the washing adds complexity and depth to the taste profile so once again water plays a vital role. Once processed, the beans are then dried and there is then an extensive tasting process when the coffee is tested for taste and quality. Samples for this stage are made up using water and then “slurped” by a professional taster until the perfect result is achieved. Then the beans are roasted and ground before they can finally be brewed. So the journey of the coffee plant and its seed from soil to cup is extensive and also utilises water almost every step of the way.

5.    What challenges/benefits do you associate directly with water in the context of the work you do?

Mineral content and water composition of H2O can impact on the taste of coffee so this could positively or adversely affect coffee drinkers and those in the trade alike. In Suffolk (and East Anglia), we live in a hard water area so it’s interesting to note that it’s believed that hardness could actually boost taste so perhaps the coffee beans and products I offer benefit from this! I guess, however, it’s all relative because unless you travel and regularly sample the same coffee made with different types of water then you get used to the taste of the water in your own area anyway.

6.    How often do you use water within the work you do?

Everyday – possibly not directly although I do enjoy a daily cup of Dolchenza! Nevertheless none of my clients could offer coffee without water and therefore my business could not operate in those circumstances.

7.    Overall, in a nutshell, how important is water to you?

It goes without saying that life could not exist without water but my whole industry relies wholeheartedly on the liquid too. Think how many people rely on water for a decent cup of coffee in the morning – imagine the world without it!

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