“A single or a double?” Most people immediately recognize the phrase refers to coffee, the second-largest dollar commodity in the world, next to oil. However, even though coffee is such a high-value commodity, its per capita consumption has been dropping over the past 40 years. In this same period of time, ready-to-drink (RTD) beverages have become very popular. Many think there is a basic difference between coffee and RTD beverages: RTD beverages are bottled and sealed under conditions that ensure consistency. To overcome this difference, some coffee manufacturers are now promoting a different RTD beverage--one that is ready-to-dispense.
Coca-Cola made a similar switch, after realizing the inconsistency of its brand was caused by the irregularity of mixing by soda jerks. To overcome this obstacle, the company invented the post-mix dispenser, changing the way drinks were served over the counter. XCafé is one company that followed similar insight into the basic problems in the way coffee and coffee beverages were being produced. It designed and patented a manufacturing process that can produce high-quality, single-origin coffee extracts and signature flavor and aroma blends to be used in either ready-to-dispense applications or formulated into foods and beverages.
Many hotels and large-scale, coffee-serving entities now offer ready-to-dispense coffee, as it delivers a consistent cup of real coffee--very quickly and with no waste. XCafé can produce specialty blends and extracts that can be paired with the right post-mix equipment (sold by Bunn and others) to create a coffee solution. On the other side of their business, XCafé focuses on coffee extracts that are specifically for use as food and beverage ingredients. Examples of the types of applications in which coffee extracts are used include iced coffee; ice creams and gelatos; frozen drinks and granitas; liquors and cordials; RTD beverages; dairy products; frostings and fillings; and bakery and confectionery.
“Our extraction method can capture the essence of any single-origin coffee from such countries as Colombia, Guatemala, Brazil, Kenya, Tanzania, Sumatra and Papua New Guinea. As each offers a distinctive flavor and fragrance, this can now be extended to food or beverage formulations with such high quality that a coffee connoisseur can distinguish between them,” says Cathy Kalenian from XCafé. XCafé consistently claims throughout its company literature to “love special projects” and welcomes projects of all sizes, where clients may want to modify the concentrate (Brix), solids, ingredient quality, roast levels and other variables, such as using preservatives or the types of beans used.
--Kerry Hughes, Contributing Editor
For more information:
X Café LLC • Princeton, Mass.
Cathy H. Kalenian • 978-464-8010
R&D: A Single or Double? -- May 2008
May 1, 2008