Coffee expert talks ‘excellent’ taste ahead of Kilgore restaurant tasting event

WEBXTRA: Brigitta's coffee expert weighs in on what makes a cup of coffee truly great

KILGORE, TX (KLTV) - Something is brewing at Brigitta’s Hungarian Restaurant in Kilgore, and what you taste may ruin your usual morning cup of coffee.

On Tuesday, the restaurant is hosting an exhibition of coffee and art, which will feature the expertise of coffee expert Claude Hammond. While the cup of coffee you brew every morning may involve a few scoops of your preferred brand, or maybe just popping in a K-Cup and pressing “Start”, Hammond’s taste involves much more specific measurements and temperatures.

“It’s all about precision,” Hammond said. “When you pay close attention to anything, you’re going to do it better. This is true with coffee, down to the very grams of ground coffee, down to the size of the grind, down to the temperature of the coffee, down to the quality of the water."

Hammond isn’t just an expert because he drinks a lot of coffee, he studied it. Hammond lived in Dubai for many years, where he attended the Specialty Coffee Association of Europe. Before that, he said he learned much of what he knows about coffee from native roasters and grinders in some of the Arabic tribes there.

“They have a great, 1000-year-old coffee heritage on that part of the Arabian peninsula, they’re all about hospitality," Hammond explained. “When you get invited over for coffee, you end up getting lots of food, too, and talking; people like to talk and laugh and sip good coffee, it’s just great.”

Posted by Brigitta's Hungarian Restaurant on Monday, January 28, 2019

Hammond will be sharing his own coffee knowledge with guests of Brigitta’s Hungarian Restaurant Tuesday night as part of the Exhibit of Coffee and Art event. The event starts at 5 p.m. and costs $11.95 per guest. It includes hor d’oeuvres, frocc, and specialty coffee.

“Coffee should be something more than just something you drink when you’re driving a truck,” Hammond said. “It should be a social experience that people enjoy with great food and great friends. It’s a philosophy all of its own; it could lend itself to a beautiful experience.”

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