Sweet Maria's Weblog

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October 2, 2014

Brazil Minas Gerais - Murilo Neiva Junqueira is a bodied Brazil cup, unrefined sugars and nut notes, along with hints of raisin and black currant. This is a standout Brazil.


Nicaragua Dipilto Finca La Laguna has a praline nut and toffee sweetness, a mild cup, with subtle acidity. A soft bean that takes heat quite well, cupping best in the City+ and beyond roast ranges. Both superb drinking coffees, as well as perfect bases for blending.

Roasted Coffee: Ethiopia Yirga Cheffe Kochore Zonegediyo & Kenya Nyeri Kigwandi AB

October 2, 2014

I'm excited about our African coffees and can't get enough of them at this time of year. I have always been a fan of Nyeri and Yirga Cheffe coffees and it's a pleasure to feature two nice ones at once. 

I have been roasting most of the subscription coffees at a City+ roast lately. It's a balancing act between acidity, sweetness, and body that intrigues me, and City+ is a fine suit for balancing these two coffees! 


Ethiopia Yirga Cheffe Kochore Zonegediyo City+

This new Ethiopian coffee was released last week. It's a Yirga Cheffe that is about as classic as Yirga Cheffe gets. You get that distinct jasmine in the dry grind and it explodes as soon as the water hits. It drinks with herbaceous tea notes and a pulp like acidity in the middle pallet. The finish has a juicy lemonade and dried peach sweetness. 


Kenya Nyeri Kigwandi AB City+

City+ is at it's best here. There is a grapefruit-like sweet acidity that's nicely balanced in this cup. The body is large and sits with heft on the lounge from start to finish. A refreshing mild black tea finish peaks up at the end too. 


 -Danny Goot

Questions Anyone?

We really enjoy getting out of the office and doing coffee roasting demonstrations at events like Maker Faire, Makers & Tasters and Eat Real here in the SF Bay Area. It’s a good way to connect with home coffee roasters and our local customers. Here’s some questions that we have been asked more than once. This might be worth forwarding to your friend or family member that has been curious about home roasting.


Where can I buy green coffee?

Hopefully from us. There’s other online green coffee retailers out there that you can try as well...but we hope you like our coffee the best.


How long does green coffee last for?

Commercial coffee suppliers would say that green coffee lasts over a year in storage. We think 6 months is around the time when it begins to degrade in quality.


Why would anyone want to roast their own coffee?


Two New Fantastic African Coffees to Dream About This Weekend

Sept. 26, 2014

Kenya Nyeri Kigwandi AB showing best at City+ to Full City ranges, is layered with citrus notes and caramelizing sugars that dominate the cup. White grapefruit and a bit of bergamot orange provide a complex bittering aspect. Try this Kenya in your espresso machine too!

Ethiopia Yirga Cheffe Kochore Zonegediyo is a classic Yirg, with bergamot and jasmine florals, herb tea notes, and a mouth refreshing citric acidity. 

Rhyme or Reason

Sept. 25, 2014

Why You Roast - Marshall Hance

Marshall Hance is a "Get Action" sort of individual; on the go, driven, and endlessly curious. Like many in roasting at home or in shops, Marshall is a tinkerer. Putting things together is a passion, but putting them together for a reason is the true draw. In the case of Mountain Air Roasting in Ashville, NC, that reason is excellence in coffee. Knowing that Marshall comes from a background of building his own roasters and roasting for himself I wanted to know what drove him to do it professionally and if that pursuit had any impact on his love of roasting in the first place.

CS: How did you start roasting coffee?

MH: I started roasting just a few weeks after reading about it when I realized roasting was what I was supposed to be doing instead of turning wrenches at a bicycle shop. That bike shop was actually my first customer, and five years later I still enjoy making deliveries to my friends there.

CS: Do you believe in the idea of the freedom and independence of being a small business owner?

MH: I'm not sure if freedom and independence are a reason to be a small business owner. I'm certain my life was much more free and independent with a "normal" 40hr a week job. While I do feel captain of my own ship, it takes away from other favorite pursuits such as riding bicycles and cooking dinner. Ideally, I would roast about 15 batches a day, 5 days a week. I enjoy getting into the groove but not breaking my back.

CS: What do you like most about roasting?

MH: I think the combination of introverted precision and tastiness of product were the most interesting aspects of roasting to me. The fact that a roasting business is smoothly scalable from roasting for one’s self to roasting thousands of pounds a day was a draw; knowing that I could find where I fit in the market and build a business to compete seemed to offer tremendous opportunity.

CS: What roasting devices or set ups have you used?

MH: At this point in time, the only roasting machines I've used are the ones I've built. They've all been rotating fluid bed hot air roasters, scaling up from 1/2 lb, 2lb, 6lbs, and finally 15lbs batch size. Each step up, the byproducts of roasting were more than I had...