MADE TO ORDER
Stavros Lamprinidis, from Greece, is a lively, somewhat eccentric character whose passion for coffee has led to him winning more than half a dozen world coffee championships. As an authorized member of the Specialty Coffee Association (SCA), Europe, and a judge at HORECA 2018 Lebanese Barista Competition, he has traveled the world and brainstormed with coffee manufacturers, farmers and just about everyone working in the supply chain. Here, he gives his take, from the global coffee industry’s perspective, on the trend for using syrups in this popular beverage.
As a veteran of the coffee-making industry, what do you regard as the main changes that have taken place in the business and what has caused them?
Coffee-making has changed significantly over the past two decades. During the first wave, consumers wanted instant coffee, while in the second wave, commercial espressos dominated. Today, in the third wave, consumers not only want different types of specialty coffees, but are expecting their baristas, roasters and farmers to be more informed about the coffee they are handling. Furthermore, these same consumers insist on knowing more about where and how their coffee is sourced and made. This, in turn, has resulted in the offering of better quality coffees, despite the fact that we still have much to improve.
Consumers’ ever-changing tastes have driven various industries to introduce new concepts and flavors. Is this why adding syrup to coffee has become a popular practice?
It’s true that consumers are always looking for something new, which drives people in the food industry to accommodate demand. The use of syrups is one way to go about doing just that, especially when it comes to introducing novelties that may hold new appeal for consumers.
Is there a specific syrup flavor that doesn’t yet exist that you’d like to see produced?
According to industry sources, the big brands are hard at work creating an entire line of new flavors. On a personal note, the one flavor I would really like to see manufactured is tomato, while flavors and other ingredients that have worked well for me in the past are fruits, nuts, biscuits and herbs. When it comes to choosing any kind of syrup, the quality, freshness and amount of chemicals involved are central elements of consideration.