Our Coffee Roasting Philosophy
Showcasing the Bean
While we may utilize some sophisticated equipment in the process, our philosophical approach to coffee roasting is quite simple……we must not only preserve the terroir of the bean, but must highlight it. We feel that there is no better way to honor an exceptional coffee and the farmers who produced it than to roast with only that goal in mind. After all, the intrinsic flavor characteristics of a high quality single-origin coffee are what define it, what make it unique among many others, and what we as roasters have a responsibility to showcase.
When it comes to the coffees grown on our family farm, we go to great lengths to cultivate, microlot, harvest, process, and transport them with the utmost care. All of this effort would be wasted if we didn’t put the same level of care and commitment into the roasting process itself. When sitting at the bar in Peixoto Coffee and sipping on a properly extracted espresso made with our family coffee, we can taste our farm……literally, taste OUR farm.
The other exceptional single origin coffees that we carry represent the survivors of many outstanding single-origin specialty coffees that reach our cupping table. We utilize a rigorous in-house coffee cupping and evaluation protocol to down select only the coffees that meet our extremely high standards and that represent some of the most exciting coffees grown in their respective parts of the world.
At Peixoto Coffee, our entire staff is involved in our coffee cupping process. We not only encourage it, but require it. This not only yields an exceptionally well-trained barista staff (one that is intimately familiar with the coffees we sell), but also increases the range of palettes assessing our coffees. This type of coffee assessment helps us more accurately source the origins of coffee and the unique flavor profiles that our discerning customers are seeking.
Executing the perfect roast profile…every single time
Consisting of thousands of different chemical compounds, roasted coffee is a remarkably complex product. When raw green coffee beans first enter a hot roasting machine and the roasting process begins, all of the flavor potential of those beans is already present, locked inside and ready to be brought out. The symphony of chemical reactions that ensue in the next few minutes is a delicate dance between the machine operator (roaster) and the beans tumbling within. During the roasting process, hundreds of conjugate chemical compounds are forming, breaking down, and reforming every second. There are narrow windows within this time frame (sometimes only a couple of seconds) when the roaster’s skill at manipulating the heat and airflow profile of their machine will literally make or break the coffee. All of the hard work done at origin to produce a one-of-a-kind coffee hangs in the balance.
As with many crafts, there are often differences in opinion about the correct approach to that craft. In today’s age of technology, the coffee roasting philosophical debate is often drawn up between those who take the old world approach of pure sensory roasting (often leaving behind optimization and consistency) and those who use technology exclusively (often leaving behind their senses). We choose to adopt certain aspects from both approaches, utilizing a perfect synergy of the two.
We initiate the roast profile development process for our coffees by starting with green bean data collection, sample roasting, and cupping. We marry the measured bean size, density, and moisture content readings of a coffee with its sample roasting/cup flavor characteristics to work out an initial roast profile. Following a few iterations of small-batch roasting and production cupping, we hone in on the exact profile that we feel best showcases the coffee’s unique characteristics, the profile that makes that coffee truly shine. At that point, we leverage our custom-built closed-loop control roasting software to deliver an exceptional level of roast consistency (it never hurts to have a former rocket guidance engineer on our roasting staff). However, being craftsmen, we always trust our senses above all else and use them as the final decision maker in completing the roast cycle of each and every batch of coffee.