To roast or not to roast - Page 2

Discuss roast levels and profiles for espresso, equipment for roasting coffee.
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Compass Coffee

#11: Post by Compass Coffee »

TimEggers wrote:Home roasting is a lot like cooking, can the culinary pros crank out better cuisine than me? Yeah, but I love my meals all the same and it won't keep me from cooking!
Are you sure, don't sell yourself short! As with top Artisan coffee roasters versus home roasting when it comes to (other) food and professional culinarians compared to home culinarians matching their fare I still say sometimes yes sometime no! :wink: And sadly when it comes to home preparaton of a certain food group (ie coffee) a preponderance of the time home culinarians will beat a Five Star Restaurant badly hands down. Referring to home culinarians that hang out around places like this of course. I recall one quite exquisite meal "out" at a very fine establishment, they even offered Cona Vac brewed coffee at the table, but didn't know what the coffee was other than some blend name, didn't know the degree of roast, didn't know the roast date etc. Don't recall if they at least ground for each brewing, didn't get that far, made after dinner coffee when we got home.
Mike McGinness, Head Bean (Owner/Roast Master)

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#12: Post by mrgnomer »

My iRoast2 hung in there for about 2 years, 400 roasts. I often roasted 3-5 batches in a day towards the end of it's useful life. That could have killed it.

It took a while to get to know the roaster and roasting. After the first year my roasts were very good. It took research, observation, experimentation and logging but my best iRoast roasts were as good as or better than any local commercial roaster. Absolutely you can improve your coffee with an iRoast. My first good roast, an Ethiopian Harrar, blew me away. Fresh blueberries. I'd never tasted anything so fresh or distinct in a drip before. You never can capture that incredible first taste experience, I don't think, but I've been chasing it ever since.

If you want longevity the iRoast I don't think is designed for that. I took mine apart to lube a sticking fan shaft and the inside looks like a hair dryer. By its design the high heat from the heating elements is going to burn something out in time. I think either my heating elements were shorting or something on the control board was going with mine. The elements wouldn't heat up on the first try when it started going and at the end they'd get hot, shut off and cool way below set temps, turn on, off....

The guts of the iRoast can be replaced but for what a new one costs now...

My replacement roaster is a Hottop.

Oh yeah. One benefit I found from the iRoast is the lowish roasting capacity. With the iRoast2 I could roast 5 SO's separately, pick and choose during the week for drip and blend for espresso. So one bean could be roasted light, another med, another med/dark according to what I found was best for the particular bean. With a larger capacity roaster like the Hottop I can't roast as many SO's separately. I'd never be able to finish them all before they got stale. The Hottop espresso roasts are getting blended green.
LMWDP #116
professionals do it for the pay, amateurs do it for the love

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#13: Post by farmroast »

I have found that having an accurate bean temp. using a digital thermometer- thermocouple and count-up timer have been my best learning tools. I roast with a BM/TO(bread machine motor with high torque and higher rpms than a stir crazy or ufo corn popper with a Galloping Gourmet turbo oven top) and can get a very accurate reading of bean temp. I chart my roasts every minute or sometimes every 30 secs. My degrees/min. rises are a great way of knowing whats happening with my roast and the differences between different origins, types of processed etc. A batch size of 1 1/2 lbs is a plus also. I have used a hot air Poppery too and get very frustrated with the general lack of control I have with this method. But with my BM/TO roasting is a pleasure. Ed
LMWDP #167 "with coffee we create with wine we celebrate"