Coffee Meets Savory: Josh Boutwood Creates Perfect Flavor Pairings with Exceptional Coffee Taste

Coffee Meets Savory: Josh Boutwood Creates Perfect Flavor Pairings with Exceptional Coffee Taste


Your daily brew paired with the right flavors can surprisingly complement savory food so well

When it comes to pairing food with coffee, the common route is to pair it with pastries or sweets. It’s a widely-known go-to combination much like wine and cheese. To any coffee enthusiast, however, finding the right ingredients and dishes that go together with your blend can further accentuate the experience.

Up to the task of putting together exceptional coffee tastes with delectable dishes is chef and restaurateur at Helm, Josh Boutwood. For a night shared with fellow caffeine lovers, the recently-awarded La Liste 2021 Young Talent of the Year chef created two dishes to accompany Nespresso’s limited edition Master Origins Aged Sumatra and Papua New Guinea.

Read more: Nespresso Goes Beyond Coffee to Champion Positive Change

Along with Nespresso’s Made With Care campaign, Chef Josh Boutwood curated a gastronomic menu that was greatly inspired by the incredible craftsmanship of local farmers in harvesting and roasting the finest beans to create a unique flavor profile for each coffee blend. “They are putting care in every step until it reaches the cup. I’m in awe that I get to taste this wonderful coffee that they bring to us,” says Boutwood.

A woody aroma paired with a roasted bite

It isn’t just fine wine that’s aged to perfection. Sumatran barrel-aged coffee cherries go through a method called giling basah followed by a meticulous aging process. Coffee farmers show their craftsmanship by continuously monitoring and rotating the coffee cherries to distribute their moisture inside the hull. This process lets the cherries breathe so they could dry more easily. 

Unlike other coffee varieties that go through a similar process, authentic Aged Sumatra beans are aged for three years. Through proper storage, the beans give off an earthy and sometimes chocolatey flavor profile.

In creating the complementary dish for the limited edition Master Origins Aged Sumatra, Chef Josh Boutwood acknowledged how robust its taste is thanks to its smooth and complex spice notes. “It has this wonderful woody aroma and so we wanted to pair it with some wonderful roasted flavors,” shares the culinary artist. 

Boutwood came up with a divine plate of tender short rib slow-cooked for three days and garnished it with cacao and cauliflower. He also adds: “We want it to be a little bit more delicate and bring in some chocolate tones that will linger, and also incorporate an aged process.” True enough, the aged meat carried all the food combinations along.

Bright tones complement earthy flavors

Coming from the same region, Papua New Guinea is also a strong coffee cultivator of Arabica varieties. Think sweet, full-bodied, and with a low acidity level—that’s the unrivaled taste of New Guinean craftsmanship and highland tradition that every coffee connoisseur appreciates. From the remote wet mill its cherries were brought to, the coffee undergoes a lengthy fermentation process so that its coffee profile will bring out its deep yet balanced taste with a tinge of exotic and fruity aroma.

“The first thing that I enjoyed when I tried the limited edition Master Origins Papua New Guinea is that there are these beautiful aromas of honey and lovely bright tones in the coffee,” says the restaurateur.

Creating the dish to pair with the Southeast Asian-harvested beans is a delectable plate of rich buttery Chilean Sea Bass, celeriac, kombu, and hazelnut. “I immediately knew that I needed to pair it with something that was a little bit more earthy, grounded, and almost floral in order for those particular coffee taste profiles to be exemplified slightly,” shares Boutwood.

The Master Origins blends, Aged Sumatra and Papua New Guinea, are available for a limited time in Nespresso boutiques located in Power Plant Mall, The Podium Mall, and Robinsons Magnolia, pop-up stores in Greenbelt 5, One Bonifacio High Street Mall, Shangri-La Mall, TriNoma, Alabang Town Center, SM Mall of Asia, and SM Aura, and online at Follow on Instagram and Nespresso Philippines on Facebook for more info.

Order your print copy of this month's MEGA Magazine:
Download this month's MEGA digital copy from:
Subscribe via [email protected]