NORDIC COFFEE CULTURE

Presently, the smell of coffee began to fill the room. This was morning’s hallowed moment. In such a fragrance the perversity of the world is forgotten and the soul is inspired with faith in the future.
— Halldór Laxness (Iceland's Nobel Laureate), Independent People
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When most people think of coffee, it's not normally the Nordic countries that first spring to mind. Maybe the espresso bars of Milan, the cafes of Paris, or lush, tropical farms in Brazil or Indonesia. But in fact our northerly neighbours - Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden - have for many years been sourcing, roasting and brewing some of the best coffee in the world.

Coffee is a big part of everyday life for Nordic people and plays an important social role. The Swedes enjoy a daily "fika", a coffee break with friends normally accompanied by something sweet. Icelanders will offer "tiú dropar" (ten drops) of coffee to a visitor who is briefly stopping by, while Norwegians out hiking on mountain trails will stop for a "turkaffe" (literally hiking coffee), prepared outdoors over an open fire or gas burner.

Our roasting style is heavily influenced by Nordic coffee culture, typified by careful sourcing of very high quality beans and lighter roast profiles. We roast gently to preserve the distinct natural characteristics of each bean. That way, we can fully appreciate the differences in flavour resulting from different climates, altitudes and terroirs, as well as how the beans have been grown, picked and processed at origin.

Our Nordic neighbours also have a deep-rooted love of good filter coffee. In the UK, filter coffee has for some time taken a back seat to espresso-based drinks. That has started to change and many quality coffee shops now serve excellent, carefully prepared filter coffees. We are firm believers that a well-brewed cup of filter coffee is a great way to experience coffee. Here at Sundlaug, we start every day with a freshly ground, slow-brewed filter coffee - whether a floral Guatemalan, a sweet, fruity Kenyan, a smooth and balanced Colombian or a citrusy, fragrant Ethiopian. Because our roasts are lighter, more delicate and sweeter than many coffees, they work well without having to add any milk or sugar (though most will also taste great with milk!).