Coffee comes from distant lands Mexico, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Colombia, Brazil, Peru, Bolivia, Ethiopia, India, Indonesia, Papua New Guinea, Cuba, Jamaica, Nepal. As soon as it reaches the facility it is put into store and prepared for roasting. L’Alpina is the only coffee roaster to use the P/66 method: coffee is roasted in small quantities to conserve all the freshness and richness of its aromas. Beans are only lightly baked and roasting can be customised to the client’s taste.
Before sale, after roasting and cooling, coffee beans and ground coffee are protected by sealing them in vacuum bags.
L’Alpina purchases its coffees directly from the plantation, through its all-Italian importers: it specialises in single-origin varieties, coffees of a single variety and sourced from just one grower.
Its focus on and passion for genuine ingredients have fired L’Alpina with great enthusiasm for coffees purchased from individual plantations.
Tasting the same type of coffee but grown in regions with different soils and altitudes is a wonderful experience for the palate.
Pierluigi draws on his more than thirty years’ experience in the art of top quality confectionery to bring out the best in every single ingredient, with a special interest in coffee.
His coffee biscuits contain ground coffee and not the drink; this makes the product unique in both flavour and consistency.
Both the most elaborate and the simplest creations highlight the true professionalism and experience of their maker.
Coffee flowers resemble jasmine in both colour and fragrance.
The fruit is a dark red cherry drupe, which stands out amongst the coffee tree’s green leaves. The small berries are collected and processed to bring pleasure to palates the world over.
The most widely grown species are Coffea arabica, Coffea robusta and Coffea iberica, but there are about forty varieties.
Roasting gives the coffee fragrance and flavour; before roasting, green coffee produces a very delicate drink. A skilful coffee roaster identifies “the best roasting curve for every single-origin variety”, to bring out all its aromas.
Coffee originated from the Kaffa region in Ethiopia, from where it spread across the Arab countries, Turkey and Persia.
Coffee’s qualities and the differences created by roasting methods were first recognised in Italy, in Venice, in the 17th century.
The places where people used to meet to savour a good cup of coffee became a social phenomenon, as coffee-houses were where people met to discuss major decisions that were often to change the course of history.
Coffee is socialisation; everyone has their own favourite.
Some like their coffee strong, others weak, double with sugar, with an added dash of hot or cold milk, with cream, with a drop of spirits, Irish, American, Moroccan, “bicerin”, “granita” …. an ever-changing world. Today green coffee is also very popular.
Dry: the “natural” processing method, the oldest, in which the coffee berries are dried in the sun. They are spread over large surfaces and turned regularly, often for several weeks, to dry them evenly, until the beans detach from the dried pulp. Dry roasting gives the bean a sweeter flavour, since the sugar transfers from the pulp into the bean. This type of processing is particularly suitable for beans to be used for espresso coffee making.
Wet: the cherries are washed in running water, after which the skin and pulp are removed. The coffee beans are dried in the sun in their parchment, which is then separated mechanically. The washed bean has a fruitier flavour.
Semi-wet: the skin of the cherry is removed with water, after which the bean is immediately placed to dry in the sun, with the pulp still attached.
The differences in flavour due to wet or dry processing are only perceptible after roasting.