More About Coulée Coffee Company
What is natural is just that—nature. Under the tranquil, snowy caps of the Sawtooth Mountains, Coulée Coffee was born. The three of us were sipping our freshly poured-over gourmet coffees, encircled by the thick, burnt-chocolate aroma of auburn beans roasted with perfect love, gazing at the beautiful, natural landscape of Sun Valley, keeping mostly quiet, as the breathtaking backdrop intensified the silent joy of our shy taste buds, slowly awakening our palates, when it hit all of us at the same moment. “Why can’t a cup of coffee be perfect?” we asked aloud. Certainly more pressing problems existed in the world, but, agreeing that every little bit helped, we determined that very moment, inspired and motivated by a simple beauty—the feeling one has of drinking the perfect cup of coffee—should be the rule instead of the exception and began to sketch the foundation of the Coulée Coffee System.
Where to start? We wanted our system to be portable and fast, which meant convenient, but it had to taste great. We figured the convenience of single-serve coffee likely appealed to just about everyone, and pods were probably the path most would follow when creating a new single-serve system. Our initial investigation verified our claim as we learned pods are the number one single-serve coffee choice in the market (tens of billions of dollars in annual sales). Dismayed, but not discouraged, we pressed our research to understand better the motivations of consumers, leaving us to conclude many persons really had no choice when weighing convenience against such important matters as flavor, environmental impact, and health. No superior alternatives existed in the single-serve world. Besides, who has the time when making coffee for the prep work and the clean-up, especially when you can get a cup of joe in two minutes? In a weird twist, these motivations gave us our edge. Why?
Drinking coffee is more than just ingesting caffeinated fuel. It is one of life’s pleasures. We would no sooner pick a fortified wine over a premium Bordeaux than we would pick one of the current single-serve coffee choices over a properly-brewed, full-bodied cup of coffee. In researching the current single-serve approaches, we quickly learned the flavor was a result of limitations from the needle infusion, poor temperature control, brew time, and water flow. Simultaneously, our experience with the richness and quality of the pour-over coffee technique resonated with us. The technique, while requiring practice, is beautiful in its simplicity and lauded for its high-quality coffee output. So, we thought: Why can’t we capture the intricacies of the pour-over coffee technique in an automated, single-serve solution?
With this question came two important convictions we all shared and agreed must be part of our new system: First, we all owe it to our children and grandchildren to preserve this beautiful world in which we live. We refused to be contributors to the ever-increasing repositories of non-degradable waste, and we became determined to put an end to the scourge of the never-degrading single-serve, led by pods, coffee landfills. Second, we felt that pouring near-boiling water through single-serve alternatives made of petroleum-based plastic and drinking the remains can’t possibly be healthy. We wanted to make sure we had a clear conscience in the materials we used to create our coffee system and products.
While our backgrounds aren’t in manufacturing consumer electronics, we collectively did have PhDs in bioengineering, experience in designing and developing highly complex electronic systems, and decades of experience in making and commercializing high-tech life science instrumentation that has been widely contributing to advances in cancer research. Plus, WE DRINK A LOT OF (GREAT) COFFEE. So, under the luminous Sunny Valley cobalt sky that ignited the white-caps of the Sawtooth Mountains, we figured piece of cake and went to work...