This may be a controversial topic, but I'm interested in everyone's opinion.
I've come to wonder whether uniformity is an overrated quality in a roast. Don't get me wrong, I love a uniform roast, but after years of churning out home roasts that are admittedly less uniform but--to my palate at least--equally (and often more delicious) than their much-lauded commercial counterparts, I'm starting to think a slightly less uniform roast may offer advantages. Could it be that a more speckled batch offers a wider range of acidity, body, and carbon? Could it be that the combined effects of its wider flavor range creates a distinct profile that commercial roasters, with their immaculate uniformity, can't reproduce?
I kind of think of it like guitar (another hobby of mine): The world is filled with virtuoso guitarists. Their playing is precise, technically wonderful, and undeniably moving. But there's a different type of player, a rougher grittier brand that's equally magnificent--the Jack Whites of the world. They may not hit every note perfectly, but they often produce licks that beat out the virtuosos, not in spite of their imperfection but because of it. A crude parallel, sure, but it's the best I can come up with.
Also, just to be clear, I'm not talking up the merits of an awful multi-colored, Jackson Pollack batch of beans; I'm talking about one that has ever so slightly different hues, even if they all land in the same roast range.
What do you all think?