I tried a smart coffee matchmaking service and the results were delicious

Coffee matchmaking: how smart tech can pair you with the right coffee beans

Pact Coffee
(Image credit: Pact Coffee)

It goes without saying that smart technology has taken over the home, but it’s not just security or lighting that’s gotten the smart treatment. Today, kitchen appliances are much more smart and technical, with app connectivity, voice assistant controls and much more.

But what about coffee machines? I’m a coffee addict, and have one of the best bean to cup coffee machines in my kitchen to help with my caffeine addiction. The machine I use – the Sage Barista Touch Impress to be exact – offers step-by-step guidance on how to make the best coffee, from the grind settings to the milk frothing.

One of the most important things when making the perfect cup of coffee is having the right coffee beans. With more and more coffee machines using smart technology and AI, I wanted to see how smart tech could match me to the right beans, so I spoke to Lowri Rhys, Head of Brand and Communications and Will Corby, Director of Coffee and Social Impact at Pact Coffee to find out more.

Coffee matchmaking: what is it and how does it work?

Before trying the Pact Coffee smart matchmaking service, I asked Lowri Rhys how smart technology has impacted the coffee world. Since the pandemic when everyone lost access to their favourite barista, “we saw huge amounts of coffee drinkers invest in home brewing equipment – particularly espresso machines,” explains Rhys.

Rhys continues, “Today, espresso machines use AI for everything, from calculating your espresso’s dosage to indicating when the milk’s at the right temperature. As a result, coffee drinkers can get a decent flat white, cappuccino, or latte from the comfort of their home.” With more people investing in a high quality coffee machine, the same needs to happen with coffee beans so you’re getting the most out of your investment. Smart technology can take care of that for you, too.

As Rhys explains, “With the right technology, it’s easier than ever to pair a customer with the right beans. Pact Coffee has a pioneering system that helps us get to know our customers’ tastes better, so we can suggest and send them more of the coffees they love.”

Lifestyle image of bags of Pact Coffee beans

(Image credit: Pact Coffee)

To find out how the system works, I decided to give it a go. “Our system starts off by asking customers what they like to drink. At this stage, they might not be familiar with the nuances of tasting notes, so we put coffee into four categories: chocolatey, chocolatey and fruity, fruity, fruity and floral,” says Rhys.

From there, Pact Coffee sends you the beans, and customers can rate them for more tailored suggestions in the future. “It sounds simple, but over time, our system becomes increasingly familiar with the customer’s palate, so we continuously get better at getting the next recommendation spot-on.”

Coffee matchmaking: the results

Before I tried the matchmaking service, I wanted to understand more about how to find the best coffee beans. The first tip Will Corby gave me was to look for the beans’ origin. “If there’s no sign of the farmer on the packaging, the chances are it’s a blend of cheap beans over-roasted to disguise their lack of flavour,” explains Corby. “In my opinion, the best coffee is found on small farms, where dedicated farmers don’t cut corners and process the whole harvest together to craft deliciously harmonious flavours.”

With this in mind, I took the Pact Coffee Quiz where I answered a few questions about my coffee habits, including how I brew my coffee and if I prefer to grind my own beans. I also asked Corby what he’d choose for me as someone who has a bean to cup machine, drinks double shot lattes with oat milk and likes to experiment with flavoured syrups.

Pact Coffee

(Image credit: Pact Coffee)

Corby quickly told me that if I have the right beans, I shouldn’t need a syrup. “I’d recommend ditching the syrups and looking out for great-quality coffee beans. Like grapes, the best coffee beans have their own natural flavours and aromas – and you’ll be surprised at what you’ll discover without anything artificial masking them.”

The results from the Pact Coffee quiz and advice from Corby matched me with darker beans to satisfy my chocolate cravings. “If you’re looking for something indulgent and chocolatey, opt for darker roasts from Brazil, but if you’re feeling adventurous, you’ll find bright hints of blackcurrant in the light roasts of Rwanda.”

Since then, I’ve been experimenting with darker roasts and have noticed a difference in my palette and the quality of the beans since ditching the syrups. To find the perfect coffee beans for you, I’d definitely recommend trying Pact Coffee’s matchmaking service.

Bethan Girdler-Maslen
Home Editor

Beth is Home Editor for T3, looking after style, living and wellness. From the comfiest mattresses to what strange things you can cook in an air fryer, Beth covers sleep, yoga, smart home, coffee machines, grooming tools, fragrances, gardening and much more. If it's something that goes in your house, chances are Beth knows about it and has the latest reviews and recommendations! She's also in the know about the latest deals and discount codes from top brands and retailers.

Having always been passionate about writing, she’s written for websites, newspapers and magazines on a variety of topics, from jewellery and culture, to food and telecoms. You can find her work across numerous sites, including Wedding Ideas Magazine, Health & Wellbeing, The Bristol Post, Fashion & Style Directory, TechRadar, CreativeBloq and more. In her spare time, Beth enjoys running, reading, baking and attempting craft projects that will probably end in disaster!