Feb

4

Coffee Roaster, by James Sogi

February 4, 2007 |

With this last year's crop of parchment back from the millers in the form of fresh green beans, the old Zach and Danni (now known as Nesco) coffee roaster bit the dust, and in shopping for a new one, discovered a good review of roasters here. I decided on a programmable I Roast 2. The review says that Nesco did not do a good dark roast as well and was a bit slow making a 'dead' cup, which I did experience with the Nesco. In the meantime, roasting is done on the Wok on the stove. Cast Iron fry pan is what the old time farmers used and it gives a very complex flavor but kicks off some smoke. The fry pan allows graduated programmable roast also, but requires standing there stirring the beans. Hopefully I will have heavenly coffee, better than a millionaire's money can buy. Fresh roast is the best way to go.

Alan Millhone writes:

Interesting article. My Daughter likes to grind her own fresh coffee and likes Caribou for grinding. My Wife and I are lazy and have been members of Gevalia for a number of years. Each month we get our standard shipment of 4 to 8 oz. boxes.

Every so often we get an additional special of some coffee. In front of me I have Maragogype from Mexico, Papua New Guinea, and Antigua that have come as additional shipments. Recently from Gevalia we got a nice coffeemaker and two boxes of coffee for $10.00. Another time or two I notified them that our pot went on the blink and we were shipped a new pot for no charge. They also sell teas, but to date have not tried them. In Belpre this morning the wind chill was three below zero, and I am currently having a cup of Bigelow brand Constant Comment tea :-) . It's an old favorite of my grandfather's and mine. He started me drinking it many years ago. I readily admit there is nothing like the aroma of fresh ground beans being brewed. My best friends are Greek and they like Bravo brand of coffee from Greece. 

Tom Larsen adds:

On vacation in Florida this week, I was driving on I-75, yawning like crazy. I knew I needed coffee and MCD saved me. I didn't even have to get out of the car to buy it and I thought about the Chair's earlier post about McDonald's coffee. I would have had some food too, if my wife weren't with me!

James Sogi reports:

Reporting back on the new coffee roaster, I-Roast-2, which produced a beautiful cup, roasted to perfection medium dark with a hint of sheen. Highly recommended over Nesco. What is interesting is that it has different programmable temperatures for first crack and second crack and finish so the oils don't come out too soon. It came with a nice variety of exotic green beans from Sumatra, Peru, Guatemala, Mexico, East Africa, Timor, so it will be fun to try the different varieties. The roast finished in less than 15 minutes, as coffee should not roast longer at the risk of getting flat. 


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1 Comment so far

  1. Mike Olds on February 6, 2007 6:55 pm

    I just roasted up 1/4 lb of Columbian beans; Organic, Rain Forest Alliance. First time. As a consequence of your post. Giving my Coffee man ( www.mre-coffee.com ) the heads up about the next trend. ahum. Did it according to his instructions (the way he first learned it): Big old 3″-deep cast-iron frying pan with lid from another pot. Medium High on a professional range (big burner), listen for the pops (more like crackles)(too hot — 1st pops too soon — too cool — doesn’t start pop’n til 14′59″), shake the pan continuously for 15 minutes; 2-3 more for a darker roast. Place in bowl take it outside and stir around to loosten the chaff and blow.

    OK, there was a little smoke, nothing that set off the smoke-alarms.

    I’ve never seen coffee that looked so good. This method binds one so intimately with the process from bean to cup that I don’t think I would want to use a roaster. This puts another whole degree of magic back into the brew. It’s like making your own bread — through the process you are in contact with those who have gone through the same motions throughout the ages. With a little practice I can see one will bring the roast to exactly the point where enjoyment of the brew it creates will be at it’s highest.

    Surely manually grinding the beans is a must.

    Of course how can you beat growing your own?

    My say.

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