Kaldi’s Coffee: A superior choice for students

| Scene Reporter

Kaldi’s coffee beans await grinding.

Kaldi’s coffee beans await grinding.

In recent years, coffee has evolved from an early morning pick-me-up to a product to be slowly savored and enjoyed. In large part, we have Starbucks to thank for this trend, but one question remains: has the corporate titan remained top dog?

I would argue that they stay true to their mission, but they have failed to progress in a meaningful way. I blame this primarily on the company’s gargantuan size; the behemoth has really struggled to move in recent years because it has had to conform to the masses.

St. Louis’ local Kaldi’s Coffee provides a fine cup for those looking to avoid that corporate giant. Like Starbucks, Kaldi’s has pledged to deliver quality to be savored, but they one-up the Seattle brew with a little creativity. Kaldi’s recognizes the fact that each type of coffee bean needs a different kind of roasting.

If you choose to venture into a Kaldi’s store, you can examine the beans for yourself. Some of the blends have mixed dark and light beans, some are completely light, and some are completely dark. The Café Kaldi is a moderate blend that is composed of several different kinds of beans. The mixture helps to mitigate the unique flavors of the individual beans and is for those drinkers who are particularly sensitive to the accents and tones, but I would recommend branching out and trying a World Tour coffee. The World Tour beans are more homogenous and thus highlight the flavor of the beans.

Kaldi’s Coffee prides itself on the quality of its beans and the specific roast of each cup. At the Kaldi’s plant, four cups of each coffee are tasted to assure quality before the beans are distributed to vendors.

Kaldi’s Coffee prides itself on the quality of its beans and the specific roast of each cup. At the Kaldi’s plant, four cups of each coffee are tasted to assure quality before the beans are distributed to vendors.

The flavors are derived from the soil and environment in which the beans are grown, so each World Tour is truly unique. It takes a little imagination to describe them. When you try the El Salvador, the words bright, acidic, blueberry, raspberry and tart may come to mind. To contrast, one might describe the Honduras blend as nutty or sweet. The flavors are particularly appealing because they are natural, unlike the artificial flavors you might find at other coffee shops. Of course, you can find artificial flavors in some Kaldi’s brews like the Highlander Grogg, but they tend to feel a little more natural than other companies’ flavors.

Kaldi’s Coffee is elevating coffee to a level of specificity to rival that of wine. If you wish to become a coffee connoisseur, Kayak’s holds instructed coffee tastings once a month. The workers are extremely helpful and friendly. The beauty of the situation is that coffee is much cheaper than wine, and it will probably improve your grades if used in moderation.

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