More About Coulée Coffee Company
Under the tranquil, snowy caps of the Sawtooth Mountains, Coulée Coffee was born. We were sipping our freshly poured-over gourmet coffees, encircled by the rich aroma of beans roasted to perfection while gazing at the beautiful, natural Sun Valley landscape, when it struck us: “Why can’t every cup of coffee be this perfect?” Certainly more pressing problems existed in the world, but inspired and motivated by the simple beauty of the moment - the feeling one has of drinking the perfect cup of coffee - we began to sketch the foundation of the Coulée Coffee System.
Where to start? Making a gourmet cup of coffee was a requisite. Still, we wanted that perfect cup of coffee to be accessible to everyone, not just coffee connoisseurs. That meant the system needed to be simple to use and convenient. Perhaps inevitably, we considered the k-cup/pod coffee systems. Certainly, the convenience of k-cups and pods likely appeals to just about everyone, a notion reinforced by the billions of dollars spent by consumers each year on those systems. After all, few people enjoy the prep work of making coffee and the clean-up that follows. However, we quickly realized that these approaches did not align with our core beliefs and goals for the Coulée system. Why?
First, we SAVOR our coffee. Drinking coffee is more than just ingesting caffeinated "fuel." It is one of life's pleasures. Our experience (and the general consensus of coffee aficionados) was that the k-cups and pods yield a weak-tasting, watery cup of coffee. In further researching those approaches, we quickly determined that the poor flavor was a result of the fundamental limitations in the system designs. Specifically, needle infusion of water, poor temperature control, poor flow profiles, and rushed brewing times would naturally limit the extraction of flavor from the coffee. And, the k-cup geometry makes it impossible to achieve the proper coffee/water ratio.
Secondly, we were distressed by the intractable environmental impact of the billions of non-degradable, non-compostable kcups/pods being sent to landfills each year. We feel strongly that we owe it to our children and grandchildren to preserve this beautiful world that we live in. With k-cups and pods, it was clear that there was no realistic path to a recyclable or compostable solution. We resolutely decided that any solution that we developed, must be in harmony with the environment.
Finally, we felt that pouring near-boiling water into petroleum-based plastics containers, and drinking the output, can't possibly be healthy. Perhaps our years of experience in contributing to advancing cancer research made us more acutely aware of those health concerns. Nonetheless, the bottom line was that we wanted to make sure we had a clear conscience in the health-safety of the materials that we used to form our coffee products.
Our search then came full circle. Specifically, our love of the richness and quality of pour-over coffee 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 not capture the intricacies of the pour-over coffee technique in an automated single-serve solution?
While our background isn't in manufacturing household electronics, we collectively did have advanced degrees, experience in designing and developing highly complex electronic systems, and decades of experience in manufacturing and bringing products to market. Plus, WE DRINK A LOT OF (GREAT) COFFEE. So, we figured, "piece of cake," and went to work....