Need advice about getting into the roasting world

justin

New member
Apr 29, 2008
6
0
Boston
I live in the New England area and I''m looking to make a job shift into the world of roasting. Any advice for getting my foot in the door somewhere would be great. Is it best to just start talking to roasters and finding an opening or is it better to catch a roasting class this summer then talk to roasters? I can offer a roaster marketing experience but no roasting experience.

Thanks for the help.

Justin
 

GreenDude

New member
Feb 14, 2008
68
0
Los Angeles, CA
justin, If it were me, I would see about finding a job at a roaster, or even just watch for a couple months at the least. Roasting coffee is very simple in theory, but when your actually doing it you'll find it to be completely different than what you thought.

So many things happen all at once while roasting, then you may have a chaff fire, or a delivery truck shows up, your assistant just punched an employee (actually happened)...etc...My point is I highly recommend getting your feet wet a little bit before opening your business :)

The courses are great tools as well when learning what roasting actually is, but try and learn the operations side as well.
 

caffe biscotto

New member
Jan 18, 2008
704
0
MASS.
I'm surprised jlyon10 hasn't chimed in yet, recommending you give home roasting a shot first.

That's how I'd go about it. Be a roaster, don't wait for someone to allow you the opportunity.
Do it. Be it. Roast it. :D

Attend some cuppings at nearby roasting companies......
 

GreenDude

New member
Feb 14, 2008
68
0
Los Angeles, CA
caffe biscotto said:
I'm surprised jlyon10 hasn't chimed in yet, recommending you give home roasting a shot first.

That's how I'd go about it. Be a roaster, don't wait for someone to allow you the opportunity.
Do it. Be it. Roast it. :D

Attend some cuppings at nearby roasting companies......

Good point! Starting on the home roasting level is a great idea, hell all you need is a frying pan 8) But really, I was assuming he was thinking bigger...But learning what cracking is can be done at home, as well as developing the skill to learn different roast profiles, etc...There are some great home roasting websites out there, just google it :wink:
 

Randy G.

New member
May 8, 2008
203
0
California
Coffee roasting is easy, particularly with some of the better home coffee roasting appliances. Once you get a feel for the process and learn the basics you could probably walk into a coffee roasting business, load some beans into a Probat, and roast a batch without catching them on fire. After a batch or three you would probably be creating coffee that is drinkable. The real challenge is creating a taste that your customers would like, and duplicating that, year after year, roast after roast, even as the crops change.

I agree that home roasting is a good start, reading every article you can get your hands on, and maybe getting a subscription to Roast magazine. With the basics in hand, getting a job with a roaster is a good idea. If there are none local (which would be a good thing if you are looking to start a business) even visiting for a few days at a commercial roaster to get some of the basics in hand.

I know one commercial roaster who has been in the business since he could walk. He can look at a temperature graph of a roast and tell you what the coffee will taste like- I saw him do it and I tasted the coffee and it as exactly as he described. Quite impressive!
 

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