The following training guide is intended specifically for baristas working with commercial equipment in a café environment. For home brewing guidelines, please visit our home brewing section.
This manual is divided into sections, and is intended to be read in order. You must first master the standards before you can proficiently build drinks. This document is the beginning of a journey into the processing and preparation of coffee and tea. If you study this manual and practice the techniques, over time you can become quite proficient in drink making, however, there is no substitute for curiosity. Remain open to the idea that coffee preparation is a craft, and like all crafts, you can only get better over time.
For a deeper understanding of extraction and advanced techniques, we recommend a series of books by Scott Rao, in particular ‘The Professional Barista Handbook’. His books can be found at www.scottrao.com.
Training is always free at Metropolis, so please take us up on it. Keep learning. Keep practicing. Remain, at all times, curious.
WHAT IS COFFEE?
What is coffee, where does it come from, and how is it cultivated, processed, and roasted? Coffee is the seed of the fruit that grows on coffee trees (coffea). Coffee trees grow near the equatorial belt, and are divided into two main categories – Arabica, and Robusta. The vast majority of specialty coffee is Arabica. Metropolis purchases only Arabica coffee.
WHAT IS TEA?
Tea is made from leaves of Camellia sinensis, or closely related cousins. There are six unique types of tea, all made from this one plant: Green, Yellow, White, Oolong, Black and Dark (Pu-erh tea). Each type is differentiated by the techniques the farmer uses to develop flavor, most notably, oxidation (allowing the leaf to turn brown).