This is a great article about a large and somewhat controversial topic (as you’ll see if you click through some of the links) in specialty coffee right now.
The article covers what might be a movement back to automation for brewing drip coffee in the specialty coffee industry (brewing in batches, instead of on the spot, using machines that automatically dose water, etc.), something that, even two or three years ago, would’ve been frowned upon by a good deal of people in the industry.
I distinctly remember circa 2008 when shops were pulling their Fetcos (automated batch brewers) and replacing them with pourover bars. Is this current movement back to automation a regression? A step forward? Are pourover bars a noble, but ultimately failed experiment?
All interesting questions. Perhaps what’s most encouraging is that a lively debate is going on. A healthy industry is one that isn’t comfortable doing things the same way over and over because it’s the way it has always been done. An industry constantly questioning itself is an innovative industry. We’re happy to be a part of it.