When you buy wholesale coffee, you typically buy a large quantity at one time. You get a good deal, but no matter what price you pay, you only really come out on top if the product is one that you and your customers like. A good cup of coffee can go a long way in drawing customers in while subpar coffee may drive customers elsewhere. How do you go about choosing the right wholesale coffee and making a smart buy? Start by following these tips.
1. Know your regional flavor profiles.
Do you and your customers tend to like fruitier, lighter coffees, or do you prefer heavier, spicier flavors? Knowing what type of flavor you're seeking in a coffee will tell you what regions you should be buying coffee from. Colombian coffees, for instance, tend to be sweet with mild acidity and a rich, smooth taste. Coffee from Brazil tends to have bittersweet notes with a heavy body, and coffee from Mexico is light bodied with fruit and spice notes. If you come across a wholesale coffee with a single origin, research that specific point of origin to see what its coffees tend to taste like. Make sure the flavors are ones you approve of before you buy.
2. Try to buy from an importer.
There are a few different types of businesses that sell wholesale coffee. Some are basically restaurant supply businesses; they buy all sorts of food products in bulk and sell them to restaurant owners and other interested parties. Other companies are dedicated to specifically importing coffee and selling it in bulk. If possible, try to buy from the second type of coffee. Importers tend to know more about the coffee they're selling and can pass more of this information on to you.
3. Request a sample.
Most companies that sell coffee wholesale will send you a small sample of the coffees you're thinking of ordering upon request. They might send you 250 grams or so, enabling you to brew enough coffee for yourself and other major players in your own business to taste. Make sure you only do this with coffees you are genuinely interested in buying. You don't want to overwhelm your palate with too many samples or make the wholesaler think you're taking advantage of them.
Buying wholesale coffee is an experience in and of itself. With the tips above, you can make it a positive experience that you will want to have again and again.