Coffee Roasting Resources – Part 1 – Basic Terminology

Brazil Cerrado Roasted on Home Coffee Roaster
Beans Roasted on Home Made Coffee Roaster

Your here likely because coffee has peaked your interest, and in particular, the process of roasting coffee. The reason’s being numerous; learning, hobby, commercial, a barista, science and more. Join my journey as a new coffee roaster as I dive into many different aspects of roasting; from terminology to building your own roaster. Below are some basic terms (and may be added to), a new to you vocabulary, used with roasting and tasting of the finished coffee. Most of these will be described in greater detail in following articles.

Charging – Adding beans to roasting chamber.

Charge Temperature – Roasting chamber environment temperature at time of adding beans.

RoR – Rate-of-Rise, the rate the beans mass temperature is increasing at any point during the roast; can be falling (increasing length of time it takes to get to the “next” temperature) or increasing (decreasing increasing length of time it takes to get to the “next” temperature) rate (I know, slightly confusing).

RoR Curve – Plot of the data throughout the batch.

Turning Point – After adding charging, this is when the temperature stops dropping and starts increasing

Top/Max RoR – The stage after the turning point when the RoR is at its highest.

Crack RoR – The temperature change during first crack.

End RoR – End of the roast. Beans will be drier and therefore more brittle.

FC or 1C – First crack

SC or 2C – Second crack (end crack)

Greens – Un-roasted beans

Temperature Flick – A logged sharp increase and steep drop of temperature

Washed, Wet, Unwashed, Semi-Washed, Sun-Dried, Mechanical Drying, Natural, etc – Different processes to get the beans in a state ready to be roasted.

Fluid Bed Roaster – A roaster designed to push heated air into the bean mass, as well as the method of agitation. Usually not over 2.2lb or 2kg because of the heat and fan power.

BM/HG or Corretto (based on the man who came up with it) Roaster – A roaster utilizing parts from a bread maker and a heat gun. Usually up to 1/2lb, or about 250g, to 1lb, or about 500g, batch size. There are also variations of this design using other heat sources and motors with essentially the same process.

Popcorn Roaster – A roaster utilizing a popcorn popper, whether electric or stove-top. Usually no more than 1/2lb, or about 250-300g.

Drum Roaster – Generally a commercial style roaster in which beans spin using an auger inside a metal cylinder laid sideways. From 1lb, or about 500g, and up.

Cupping – Process in which 200f degree water is poured onto freshly roasted and ground beans directly into the cup, without a filter, and allowed to steep for 3–5 minutes. The infusion is then mixed and the foamy head and floating grounds removed. Allow the coffee to cool before tasting. Two spoons are used, one going in the cup and the other in the mouth. Typically, the coffee spit out after tasting.

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