By Tim Coonan, Founder of Big Shoulders Coffee
This past weekend, Labor Day, I was able to get away with my lovely family to a small lake in Indiana. It was a slice. Typically I brew my wife a Chemex every morning. I have the basic tools to make a really great cup of coffee...a gram scale, a temperature-controlled kettle (203 degrees), a burr grinder, Chemex carafe and bonded filters. It doesn't take long or much effort to do this in the morning.
Anyway, this particular trip I decided we would "rough it" and I'd leave all that at home. When I woke up in our little cottage, I saw a kind of Mr. Coffee knock-off on the counter, but couldn't find filters. I had to McGuyver a filter out of paper towels, eyeball the amount of grounds for brewing and used the tap (well-water). The result was really bad coffee. When I took it to my wife, relaxing on the dock, she literally spit it out, asking what is that??! When I confessed it was our coffee, a coffee we had enjoyed at home the previous morning, she wouldn't believe it.
I tell you this, because it underscores the fact that no matter how much we put thoughtful action into our work, and how good we think the results are, the end consumer has the upper hand and final say so. And, if they are brewing it like I did, there is nothing we can do to influence the outcome.