If you’ve spent any amount of time reading about coffee online, you’ve probably stumbled across the idea of roasting coffee at home. Is home roasting worth the effort? Here are the five reasons why I started the hobby.
1. It gives you access to fresh coffee, all of the time
The home roaster never has to drink coffee that’s “past its prime.” Roasting coffee, for me, takes about 20 minutes from start to finish, including the actual roasting and cooling time. I typically roast enough in a batch for a week, so that I always to get experience the freshest coffee at it’s peak, all of time.
No more trying to buy coffee at the local shop, only to find that it’s two weeks old already. Or, even worse, forgetting that you ran out of coffee the night before after all of the coffee shops are closed.
2. It’s educational
Home roasting has taught me an incredible amount about the roasting process, single-origin coffees, and what I like when I buy coffee from a big name roaster. It allow you to experiment with roast levels, origins, blends, profiles, etc.
Sometimes you nail it and roast the “perfect” coffee. More often than not, there’s always something that can be tweaked or changed to extract the best out of the green beans the next time. There’s nothing more educational than cupping two or three different roasts of the same green bean to see how remarkably different the results can be.
3. It’s fun
For me, the act of roasting is a blast! It’s both rewarding and relaxing to turn a green coffee bean into something delicious and drinkable. It’s incredible satisfying to make a great cup of coffee from your home roast (or even better, serving it to friends!).
4. It allows you to try new, different coffees
Have you had a dry-processed Ethiopian Harrar, that tasted just like blueberries? What about a funky Monsooned Malabar? Or a lemony, tea-like Kenyan? Home roasting allows you to try different, unique coffees above and beyond what’s available at your local roaster.
For example, I once roasted a dry-processed Ethiopian from sweetmarias.com that tasted exactly like a blueberry muffin. Not “hints of blueberries” but like drinking blueberry tea. It was remarkable, and something I’ve never tasted in a commercial roast. It was a huge crowd pleaser, and can be a great gateway to entice others to join the third wave coffee movement.
5. It saves money
A pound (16 oz) of home roasted coffee costs about $7 after your consider the cost of the green beans and the weight losses. Compare that to a 12 oz bag of coffee at your local roaster for $13 to $20. In college, roasting coffee at home allowed me to have access to high quality fresh beans on a meager student budget.
Do you have any other reasons for roasting coffee at home? Let me know in the comments!