U Roast 2

Your Home Coffee Roasting Guide – Because You Should Enjoy the Full Flavour of Freshly Roasted Coffee

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Coffee Love Collage

Coffee Project: Growing a Coffee Tree

Hi friends!

I can`t express my excitement!

I am a proud proprietor of two coffee beans, that  have been harvested just a few days ago from a home coffee tree (here in Toronto!). The tree was planted from a live coffee beans brought from Brazil and despite that Coffee tree is a tropical plant (grows between 28 degrees North and 30 degrees South), it was able to grow in the northern hemisphere. Unfortunately, I don’t have a photo of the tree, but I have a photo of the two Canadian coffee beans I got and planning to plant.

Brazil coffee beans

Green coffee beans from Brazil, harvested from a home coffee plant grown in Toronto

I realize that germination rate is small and the process is long (about 2 months), but I am ready to wait. The experts suggest to strip the ripe cherry,  into two seeds, as this way the root will gout out easily from the seed.

The soil has to be close to a cactus type that drains well. Must be kept moist but not over saturate.
green coffee beans in a pot.

That’s it for now. Wish me luck and I’ll keep you posted.

Reference Guide to Coffee Roast Styles [Infographic]


So, you started roasting your own coffee, but you still have many questions in your head:

  • What is the best time to stop my roast (after the first crack, second crack or when the beans start to get oily)?
  • How to get less acidic coffee or sweeter, or full bodied?
  • What is the popular name for the roast I like?
  • How to describe the taste and flavor of my favorite roast?  etc.

These and other questions regarding the roasting styles may be answered with the following Infographic, based on Kenneth Davids’ book “Home Coffee Roasting”.

The Quick Reference Guide to Coffee Roast Styles InfographicWhat is missing in this Infopraphic is when the bean surface changes from dry to shiny. During the roast stages from Cinnamon to Medium-high/ Regular City the bean surface is dry. From the beginning of the Second Crack (between 225ºC and 230 C°), the beans start to release oil. The surface of the beans become shiny at French/Espresso Roast stage and it gets very shiny at the last stage.

Please note, that beyond this point the coffee is burned and has no body, tastes like charred rubber, the oils are driven off the surface of the bean and the roast is worthless.

Tasting terminology explained:

Acidity – very important and many times misunderstood. An acidic coffee is brisk and bright. Coffee lacking acidity tend to taste bland and lifeless. Coffees from Yemen, Kenya, Zimbabwe have a typical fruity acidity. The darker a coffee is roasted, the less acidity it has.

Body is a sensation of heaviness in the mouth. As coffee reaches a medium to dark brown roast, body increases, and as it goes to very dark roasts, body decreases again.

Aroma is less developed in very light roasts, gets to its pick in medium to medium-dark roasts, and decreases and simplifies in very dark roasts.

Complexity – represents a wide range of sensation. The pick is reached from medium to moderately dark roasts, used for espresso.

Depth – tricky and subjective term. Describes the resonance or sensual power behind the sensations that drive the taste of the coffee.

Varietal distinction – qualities that distinguish one single origin coffee from another.

Sweetness – in medium-dark through moderately dark roasts the development of sugars combined with the partial elimination of certain bitter flavor components, give the cup a rounded, soft taste and rich body without flatness. Naturally sweeter green coffees (like Brazilian, Guatemalan, Yemeni) make sweeter dark roasts.

Pungency – describe the distinctive, bitter twist that dark roasting contributes to taste. The lovers of dark roasts know and honor this sensation.

Let me know your comments! Do you find my Infographic helpful?

Until next time – Nadia


7 Reasons to Choose a Drum Coffee Roaster for Your Home Coffee Experience

What is a drum coffee roaster?

A perforated cylinder (drum) holds the coffee beans, which are being roasted by direct radiation, conductivity and convection currents of air. The cylinder constantly rotates to evenly distribute the heat across the beans. This method of roasting is the same one used in the commercial coffee roasting.

Now, let’s look at the advantages of drum coffee roasters:

  1. Large bean capacity – Drum roasters typically roast 225 g – 300 g coffee at a time, which is considered just the right amount for home users. Behmor 1600 offers the largest capacity – up to 1 lb (453.5 g). However, when roasting max quantity with Behmor, you should have in mind that some coffees will not even reach a second crack i.e. it’s hard to get darker roast.

    Behmor 1600

  2. Durability – Drum roasters are very well-built and will last longer.
  3. Long roast time – Drum roasters roast slower than the fluid-air roasters (between 15 and 20 min.), which is designed to match the traditional flavor development of a commercial roaster in smaller batches.
  4. Quiet– Most drum roasters are extremely quiet, which is very convenient when you have to listen for the subtle distinction of the first and second cracks.

    Hottop KN-8828P-2

  5. Less smoke – Most of the drum roasters have built-in smoke reduction (air filtration) system
  6.  Developed, complex flavor – drum roasters offer great complexity of flavors, whether this is due to longer roast times or the type of heat, compared to fluid-air roasting.

Currently on the Canadian market you will find the following drum coffee roasters at these approximately prices:

Gene Café

  • Behmor 1600 –  priced around  $400
    Hottop KN-8828P-2 and KN-8828B-2 – price range: $800 to $1000
  • Gene Café CBR-101  – around $500

Let me know do you own a drum coffee roaster? What is your experience and results?

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