Kathy's Coffee Talk


Coffee roasting is both an art and a science. Micro roasting in small batches gives us the opportunity to offer our customers a personal choice of roast level. We roast our coffees the way that we have discovered brings out the best flavor or compliments the natural flavor of the bean based on its place of origin. However,we are not here to tell you how to drink your coffee. We are here to serve you and guarantee you a pleasurable coffee experience in every cup. Therefore, if you have a roast preference, please be specific when ordering and let us know how you like it & we will be happy to accommodate your request.


Before you decide, let me provide you with a few details about coffee roasting. Coffee is generally roasted between 425 to 475 degrees, depending upon the desired result. Coffee also goes through what is known as a "cracking" process while roasting similar to popcorn popping. Taking the coffee through the "first crack" is necessary in order for the coffee to be cooked. Under roasting results in an undesirable bread like taste to the coffee.


Stopping after the first crack gives the coffee a nice clean, bright, light bodied, snappy taste and is how most mass marketed coffee is roasted in America. Medium to light roasting does justice to the subtle flavors found in many quality coffee beans. A light roast is often referred to as a City Roast. Coffees that favor a medium/light or City Roast include Ethiopian Yirgacheffe which can lose many of its flavor nuances at a darker roast. Incidentally, light roasts contain the highest level of caffeine as the longer you roast coffee, the more caffeine you roast out of it. So, if you're looking for a caffeine boost less is more!


Full City Roasts are a little to the darker side and are the choice of most specialty coffee retailers. A Full City or medium/dark coffee tends to produce a fuller body, well balanced cup and is a bit sweeter (almost chocolaty) in taste than other roast choices. We find that the full city roast level works well for a number of our coffees including; Sumatra Mandheling, Costa Rican Tarazu, Brazil Santos, Panama Red, Private Stock, Eric's Gourmet Blend and our Zoom Espresso. Our full city roasts have a smooth, robust taste to them without the bite that sometimes comes with a dark roast.


A dark roast or French Roast is taken into the second cracking stage of the roasting process where the oils just begin to come out of the beans.The oils contain flavor components not found in lighter roasts and give the beans a shinier look to the surface. They tend to be rich, robust & full bodied. Colombian French Roast is the most popular coffee roasted at this level due to its natural sweetness which is not muted by the darker roast.


For those who like going all the way to the dark side, the Italian or Spanish roast is the only choice for you! These beans are roasted until they stop cracking completely and become very oily producing a pleasant smoky taste that dark coffee lovers crave. We roast our Beaver Valley Espresso coffee at this level, but any coffee can be roasted this way by request.


We even have a few customers who special order their coffee burnt or black & extremely oily as they crave the charred pungent smoky taste that comes from going "beyond the dark side";)! If you want this level of roast please put it in the comments section. Otherwise, we don't normally go this dark.


If you don't specify, we will roast the beans the best way that we normally roast a particular coffee. We encourage you to try a variety of coffees from various regions as well as blends and experiment with different roast levels to tantalize your taste buds enjoying the nuances of each!


Thanx A Latte!



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