MIKAH COFFEE ROASTING PROCESS
Coffee beans are ripe seeds found inside the coffee cherry that are processed and dried before becoming the final product we call the coffee beans. Before the roasting stage, the beans are green-coloured and present a grassy aroma, with a very different smell than the final product. There are between 900 and 1,000 different compounds that are developed during the roasting process. During this roasting profiling, we can then affect the different compounds to then determine what flavor will the coffee have.
Without a proper technique, even the finest type of bean could be wasted. That’s why it will be: we at the MIKAH roasting plants we always work towards reaching perfection in our process. This is very challenging and that’s why we are always very focused on every single variable so that our quality standards are met, and our unique blend will present its signature taste.
There are three main stages in the roasting process that are as follow: the drying stage, the browning stage and the development or roasting stage.
THE DRYING STAGE
Coffee beans have a humidity between 8% and 12%. The roasting process starts by drying the beans for about 4-8 minutes with traditional drum roasters. This stage will end up reaching a temperature of about 160°C, therefore it’s very important to be careful about not burning the beans because of a too big amount of heat that may be added from the start. This stage is also important in the collection of energy for the beans in preparation for the final stage that will be producing an important amount of heat.
THE BROWNING STAGE
Once the temperature reaches 160°C, the coffee then starts to smell like toasted bread. This is the point when the aroma precursors get changed into the compounds. While the browning stage has then started, the drying of the beans continues as well.
During this stage, the browning reaction is due to the Maillard reaction, that reduces the sugars and amino acids, creating the different aromas and colour compounds known as melanoids. This is when the roasting slows down naturally -and also willingly depending on the master roasters- ensuring flavor mélange. Once this stage reaches the final steps, the coffee starts to pop and reaches the first crack, where the development stage will then start.
THE DEVELOPMENT OR ROASTING STAGE
In the beginning of development stage, the reaction becomes exothermic and the coffee cracks. During the drying and browning stages, the bean has collected energy that caused the explosion. The development time is when the wanted aroma compounds are developed. In order to avoid a smoky taste and sharp aromas
Depending on the desired flavor, the length of the development stage is typically between 15% and 20% of the total roasting time. At MIKAH, we slow-roast our specialty beans in small batches to ensure that all of them reach the peak flavor expected in the final cup.
We pride ourselves for roasting our coffee by using all of our senses: sight, smell and sound, following the MIKAH tradition to provide each and every one of our customers with an excellent quality and a true specialty coffee. In order to reach those results, we enlist the help of a highly sophisticated computerized roasting profile system that allows us to monitor the coffee in real time, consistently ensuring that no batch would fall below our quality threshold.
Over the years, we have learned that our customers can taste the difference between fresh, artisanal-roasted coffee and coffee that’s been roasted by the metric ton and sold through multinational companies – therefore, we take the former approach. Unlike multinational coffee companies, the coffee from MIKAH is usually best enjoyed as an espresso, Café Crème, filter coffee, black and ideally without any sweetener. Your taste buds will be able to experience different notes in each blend and in each cup, smooth, clean finishes and naturally sweet aftertaste of quality artisan coffee. It will be love from the first cup.
Roast degree has the biggest role on coffee’s flavor profile, with the total roast time and the different times of each stage being very important factors. At MIKAH, our roasting process takes about 15-17 minutes.
ROASTING FOR FILTER OR ESPRESSO?
Have you ever thought what is the difference between filter and espresso coffee? Filter extraction is done by gravity and its process is quite gentle. You may use very aromatic and more acidic coffee for filter. On the other hand, espresso is extracted with a 9-bar pressure. That means more flavor is extracted to the cup. Sometimes coffee roasted for espresso might not be as good as expected when brewed as filter coffee and vice versa. MIKAH blends are regularly roast considering the extraction method, which means that we always aim at the middle ground, not too light and not too dark, making a coffee suitable for both brewing methods.