How is the Samurai Shoelace coffee capsule made?
How does a capsule work?
A coffee capsule is practically a small container containing ground coffee. The capsule is hermetically sealed, i.e. the coffee can no longer "deteriorate" in it, so it preserves its quality much longer compared to ground coffee. Of course, all oxygen gets into it, so it is good to "blow out" the capsule with nitrogen during production, because in an oxygen-free environment, the coffee cannot oxidize, it does not "flatten". When we put the capsule into the coffee machine at home, it tightens into place when it is closed, and a hole is made at the bottom so that the machine can pump water into it. By pressing the green button, a vibrating pump pumps water into the capsule, the foil on the top of which is torn, and the finished coffee flows out.
How is a capsule made?
The freshly roasted coffee is ground and filled into the empty capsule in an oxygen-poor environment and then sealed. This process would be very difficult and uneven if done by hand, so it is good to mechanize it. The various work phases are clearly visible in the video below:
We use a so-called disk machine, i.e. a circular disk goes round and round, and the capsule travels on it between the individual work phases (it goes to the house for the coffee). Thanks to the programming, each capsule contains the same amount of coffee, and each capsule is sealed (soldered) in the same way. Since the entire machine is closed, no contamination (dust, other substances, etc.) can enter it, so we can work in a completely clean environment. (In the picture above, the foil that seals the capsules is loaded, and an arm takes it off from here and places it on top of the capsule. Of course, everyone in the factory wears protective clothing and hair nets, since we deal with food, in accordance with the strictest hygiene standards.)
What can be put on a capsule?
You have to experiment a lot with almost everything, even coffee beans themselves. It doesn't matter how we roast each variety, each one needs a different profile. In addition, coffee that goes into coffee machines requires a slightly different roasting profile than capsules. At the same time, you have to test the grinding to see how fine it should be, so that the capsule "comes through" nicely on any home machine, and the taste is also delicious. The filling quantity is also related to this. The more coffee that goes into a capsule, the more an older, weaker pump machine struggles with it, but the less there is, the waterier the finished drink will be.
How long does it take to set up?
This is always changing. It can be said that an item that has been encapsulated once will never behave the same in the next production, at best we can use the old settings as a reference. By constantly modifying the parameters, we search for the setting that makes coffee from the capsules of the new production exactly like the ones from the previous ones. This is sometimes a short, sometimes longer process, but if we strive for quality, we must never work only from the checkered notebook, we must always taste and measure.
That's why it's good that Samurai Shoelace capsules are made by coffee experts!
We are used to the fact that coffee needs to be adjusted every morning in a cafe, and usually during the day as well, so that the guests can drink good coffee. Something always changes, which makes the bean coffee "behave" a little differently, i.e. the taste of the coffee will be different. Sometimes we hardly feel this, sometimes it would be noticeable to the guests as well. We work in the same way with the capsules, we always adjust them anew, and we constantly taste them during production. Of course, we are also constantly developing and learning, so our capsules will be better and better!
If you would like to know what we put in a capsule, click here and read!