Home Coffee roasting is something new to us here at Whole Latte Love. We recently received a Gene Cafe CBR 101 home coffee roaster as a demo unit, so I decided to take a look and see what the excitement was all about. I was absolutely blown away by what I found. There is an enormous community of home roasters out there; numerous websites, blogs and forums all dedicated to the craft of home coffee roasting. After seeing that this wouldn't just be a quick peek into the coffee roasting world, I decided to go for it and jumped head first down the rabbit hole.
The first thing I noticed when beginning my descent into the coffee roasting world was the wide variety of home roasting units available as well as the amazing ingenuity of people who've decided to make their own roasters. There is no shortage of ways to accomplish roasting green coffee beans at home, but I'll stick with the home unit by Gene Cafe for my first attempt at roasting coffee.
How-to Start Roasting Your Own Coffee
Step one is to find a location to purchase your green coffee beans. There are multiple places on the web to buy them, and you may even be able to purchase some from your local roaster if you ask nicely! During my search for green coffee beans I found a thread about my exact dilemma within the forums at www.homeroasters.org.
Picking Green Coffee Beans
This may sound like an easy process, but it's far from it. Each region that grows its own coffee beans is known for distinct characteristics, flavor profiles and cupping notes. A few other things to learn would be the differences between dry process and wet process beans, how to decide whether you want to roast a single origin or an espresso blend, and the differences in roast profiles.
Most places you can buy green beans from online will have a recommended roast profile to guide you. As always, you will need to experiment with timing and temperature, but I would advise against going too far outside of what is recommended. Just a few degrees in temperature while roasting can completely change the taste of the coffee being produced.
Below you will find a basic chart indicating relative roast temperature and which roast profile they match up with.
- 1st Crack Begins 401 degrees
- 1st Crack Active 415 degrees
- City Roast 426 degrees
- City Plus 435 degrees
- Full City 446 degrees
- Fill City Plus 454 degrees
- Vienna Roast 465 degrees
- French Roast 474 degrees