How many coffees have you had so far today? The average person gets through two a day, though some admit to six or more. Britain is evolving from a national of tea-lovers to an army of espresso aficionados, with 95 million cups of Joe consumed every day. Most of those are drunk at home or at work; however our palettes are evolving from freeze-fried instant to something a little more sophisticated.
Wylde Coffee is a new project led by three friends from Wirral, with an emphasis on community and sustainability. “A lot of people don’t know that you can buy locally roasted beans in most British towns,” explained Jamie McIlhatton, one-third of the group. “We want people to know who has farmed their coffee, to introduce them to their back stories. We’re all about supporting local businesses and just trying new things.”
Jamie wears the White Grandad Shirt
Ian wears the Navy Plain Gilet while picking up beach litterWhile grinding beans and serving cortados, Jamie and his partners Ian Barrar and Warren Norton are hoping to turn people’s interest in coffee into a commitment to sustainability. As they put it, they’re on a mission to “bring coffee culture into the great outdoors”.
“We’re using the idea of the outdoors as an avenue to introduce people to better sustainable values,” said Jamie, who has a background in conservation. Recently, the trio took part in the Big Spring Beach Clean with Surfers Against Sewage, removing plastic bottles and other marine litter from the West Kirby Shore.
“We tried to lure people in with the promise of hot drinks,” Jamie said. “We want to get out into the community more; organising workshops and hosting networking events. We’re also creating our own coffee with a local roaster, which should be out very soon.”
Warren makes coffee wearing the Olive Duck Jacket
How to drink better coffee at home
Still stuck on instant? Here are Jamie's three tips to becoming a better at-home barista.
1. Buy a grinder. Home burr grinders are super affordable nowadays and there’s nothing better than freshly ground coffee.
2. Find a local roaster in your area and purchase from them; the fresher the coffee the better. Plus it reduces carbon footprint and supporting local business is always a good thing.
3. Experiment. There is an incredible amount of coffees out there, each with their own unique flavours, sometimes flavours you would never expect a coffee to produce. Try a different option each time and discover what you love to drink.