Coffee Roasting Process

Once the coffee beans have left the farms and have been shipped all across the world, the next step is roasting them so they can be ground, and then brewed into delicious coffee. Roasting coffee is an art form all itself, and requires a master of the craft to produce consistent coffee day in and day out.
There are three broad categories that break up different coffee roasts, starting with light, and then medium, and ending with dark. Lighter roasted coffee spends less time in the roaster, and will have a lighter colored bean, and a more mild and bright flavor generally. Medium roasts are roasted slightly longer, have a more balanced flavor. As for dark roasted coffee, in some cases, it is roasted until it is just about to combust. Dark roasted coffee is the most typically the most flavorful of the three, and the bean itself can be a dark brown, to an almost reflective black, from the oils. Though, depending on the origin of the coffee beans themselves, and the roaster, any coffee in any of the roast levels can have attributes to the others.
Once all the green coffee beans are loaded into the roasting machine, the process soon beings. There are three things that the roaster will keep an eye on during the process, being airflow, heat, and time in the roaster. Airflow is how much air is circulating through the roaster, heat is the internal temperature, and time is how long the coffee has been roasting. These three things can help the roaster roast consistent coffee.
The first stage of roasting is known as “yellowing,” during this stage, the green coffee beans will start to warm up, their color will change to a light yellow, and they will begin to give off a sort of freshly cut grass scent. Soon afterwords, the coffee beans will start to give off some steam and water vapor, which will result in the first crack. The first crack is a stage where the coffee begins rapidly lose moisture, and leads to the coffee beans making an almost popcorn sounding pop. After the first crack, the coffee can be declared done, depending on the roast. Roasting coffee up until the first crack will lead to a lighter roast, and it will have a slightly citrus flavor to it.
After some more time inside the roaster, the sugars inside the beans start to caramelize, and the second crack will occur. At this point, the coffee is at around a medium level, and will be in the middle of flavorful and smooth, a great middle ground. To make a darker roast, the coffee beans are simply kept inside of the roaster for a longer period of time. This phase is often known as the darkening roast, where the coffee beans are carefully watched until they hit the perfect level. There are roasts, such as numerous French roasts, where the coffee is roasted until it is about to burst into flames, giving it a very smokey flavor, which some people adore.

Coffee Roaster