André Hoinkis has probably one of the best jobs in the world. I’m not complaining about my job, that’s not the point. It’s just, who can say that he travels around the world to awake sleeping beauties? Maybe it’s because he’s Brazilian, maybe not, but he’s also very good in his job. He just knows how to awake those beauties. To be clear, I’m not talking about Charles Perrault his sleeping beauty, who awoke in 1697. I’m talking about a beauty that awakes every morning at my place. No, not my girlfriend – although she’s of course also a beauty -, but my daily cup of coffee.

“Coffee is a sleeping beauty,
you have to awake her and give her the time to reveal her aroma”

(André Hoinkis)

Mister Hoinkis is the International Coffee Quality Expert and Master Blender of the Dutch company Douwe Egberts. Besides that, he’s also friendly and he knows so much about coffee. Now, you’re probably thinking: “why the h*ll is Pierre talking so much about coffee?”

You’re right. That’s normally not my cup of tea (hilarious pun, I know). Last week I was invited by Douwe Egberts and Porter Novelli to join an event with Belgian bloggers. They first explained us a little bit of the history. I first planned to give you the whole story they told us, but you can easily find on internet. It all started in a small village in the Netherlands in 1753, more than 250 years ago. For more historical information, just have a look at this link to the Douwe Egberts‘ history.

After the short history part, Mister Hoinkis explained us how to make a perfect coffee. First you have to make a perfect blend. I didn’t know that 99% of the main coffee species in the world are arabica or robusta. These two kinds of coffee are also subdivided in different species, depending of the country or the ground. Coffee beans are green and don’t taste very well. So you have to roast the beans. When roasted, they are brown or even black. The last step is to ground the beans. You can play with the roasting temperature, you can use brown or black beans and you can ground the coffee coarsely or finely.  So the process of making coffee is really a piece of art. It’s the art of awaking the sleeping beauty.

Mister Hoinkis also taught us how to serve a perfect coffee. Take your time and do it “the old way”. Use a cone-type coffee filter, invented by Melitta Bentz in 1908. Preheat the coffeepot with hot water, remove the water and add freshly grounded coffee to the filter. Pour a little bit of hot water on the coffee and wait 30 seconds. Pour more coffee and wait…wait…wait. The result should (and will) be a delicious coffee, your own delicious beauty.

Douwe Egberts didn’t invite us for just a course “how to make coffee”. They also had to announce something. Douwe Egberts has 4 new flavors: Delicate, Original, Sublime and Black. Every flavor has his own character. The vintage look and the choice of one color for each flavor are part of the idea of “less is more”. The symbols on the packing of the coffee have to help the customer to make a personal decision. If the symbol has straight and thin lines, it’s not strong coffee with a simple palate of flavors (f.e. Sublime). When de lines are very wavy and thick, it’s because the coffee has a complex and strong character (f.e. Black). My personal favorite is the Black. I like the rich palate of flavors and the strong taste.

It was a interesting evening because I didn’t know that my daily cup of coffee hid so many secrets. Looking forward to a next event, so thanks to Douwe Egberts, Porter Novelli and André Hoikins. Coffee revealed a part of her secrets. Remember the words of the Brazilian Master Blender and making and serving coffee will never be the same again. Coffee is a sleeping beauty just like women. Take your time to wake them up and their secrets will surprise you!