Roasting is a heat process that turns coffee into the fragrant, dark brown beans we know and love. Most coffee beans nowadays are machine-roasted, the most common of which is drum and hot air roasters. But VerraCoffee has a line of Kawa firewood-roasted coffee that is done traditionally by hand by our tribes. Whichever type of machine or equipment used, there are four major types of roasts:
Light roasts would have a light brown color, and would be generally preferred by people who want to taste the flavor notes of the origin of the coffee. There will be no oil on the surface of these beans because they are not roasted long enough for the oils to break through to the surface. After several minutes of roasting, the coffee beans will have a popping sound. This stage is called first crack, and light roasts are usually taken off the heat right after the first crack.
This roast is medium brown in color with a stronger flavor and a non-oily surface. This roast develops through first crack. Sugars have been further caramelized, and acidity lessened. This results in coffee with higher body, but some roast flavor imposed. Most coffee beans are medium-roasted to have that balance of the origin flavor notes of the beans while getting that roasted coffee taste that most people love.
Medium dark roasts
Medium dark roasts are in between the medium roast and the dark roast. The beans are removed from the heat during or right after the second crack. These roasts have a richer, fuller flavor, more body, and less acidity than medium roasts. A little oil will start showing on the surface of the beans but will not be as oily as dark roasts.
A few more minutes after the first crack comes the second crack, and oils start rising to the surface of the beans. Dark roasts would produce shiny dark beans with an oily surface and a pronounced bitterness. The darker the roast, the less acidity will be found in the coffee beverage. The bittersweet flavors become more prominent, but the taste notes of the origin would be diminished.