COFFEES ARE ORCHIDS, NOT ASPIRINS
Aspirins are manufactured. Identical. Medicinal. A means to survive a busy week. Some see their daily cup of coffee in the same way.
Orchids, on the other hand, are exquisite products of nature, oft hidden away in remote places. Infinitely varied in their expression. Transient treats for the senses. We believe coffee should be viewed in the same light.
Now granted, the analogy will have botanists twitching uncontrollably (because coffee is in no way an orchid), but if you let the metaphor settle, you'll see just how exciting this can be, even for the casual coffee drinker. We are at an intriguing time in history where our understanding of coffee as an agricultural product, and our ability to hone and replicate accurate coffee roasting and brewing methods, have enabled a glorious variety of culinary expressions.
Rosetta Roastery is passionate about showcasing the full range of these expressions by carefully sourcing superb 'single origin' coffees from the best growing regions on earth, and roasting each lot with the care it deserves.
WHAT DO SINGLE ORIGIN COFFEES TASTE LIKE?
A single origin coffee is simply any coffee that is harvested from a distinct geographical region. This "geographical region" may refer to a tiny corner of a single farm, through to an entire valley farmed by hundreds of subsistence farmers. When talking about a single origin coffee, what is crucial is not the size of the geographical area, but rather the fact that the coffee cherries harvested all grew under a particular set of climatic conditions, in the same soil type, and were processed in the same way. The combination of all these factors will determine what that particular coffee tastes like. If you change any one of these, you will fundamentally alter the way in which that coffee tastes.
The process of discovering how all these factors affect the drinking experience inspires novices and seasoned professionals alike. It is, in one sense, a sensory education that transports the drinker back to the source of each coffee, in a way that a blended coffee could never do.
WE'RE INTO SEEKING, NOT HIDING
From time to time, coffee roasters will buy what they call "filler coffees"; beans that don't taste great on their own, but, if mixed in with other coffees, can help to improve the profitability of a "house blend". Obviously, we don't blend any of our coffees, which means there is no room to hide any proverbial valleys in the quality landscape. So, whether we like it or not, we simply must seek out the finest, cleanest, sweetest lots of coffee that we can. To achieve this, we have forged relationships with some of the world's finest coffee hunters; men and women who devote their lives to developing connections with farmers, advancing their agricultural practices, and linking passionate coffee roasters with pioneering growers. These men and women help us to scour the globe to find exhilarating coffees as they emerge with each new harvest.
This task is an endless one, because each year there are new harvests, new technologies being developed, and even new varieties being discovered. One of the tasks that excites us most is drinking our way through a myriad of superb coffee samples from around the world, in order to pick out the few gems that will eventually find their place in the Rosetta Roastery stable.
COFFEES ARE LIKE SIMILES
That heading is misleading. Coffees aren't really like similes. They are more like steak. Sourcing a high quality piece of Kobe beef (Wagyu is for cowboys) is only one half of a culinary achievement; the other half of the task is delicately preparing and cooking that steak to perfection. Without both halves of the task, there is no sanguine culinary culmination for the expectant diner. And so it is with coffee - sourcing a truly outstanding crop is a good start, but it is still essential to combine the coffee's natural flavours with the influence that the roaster's heat has on those flavours before that coffee can be brewed.
Oftentimes the most vocal coffee roasters have fallen into two camps: those who pride themselves in roasting coffees that are heavy, smoky, and peaty - comprehensively roasted; and those who worship each lot of coffee in its raw glory, seemingly resenting the fact that the roast process is necessary at all. But there is a third group that believes that coffee roasting is about producing balance between man and nature - taking the flavours inherent to the bean and adding to them the flavour components contributed by the roasting process. Ideally, the result of this balancing act is the divine synergy that we call coffee.
As a part of this latter group, we seek equilibrium between the fruity, floral, grainy flavours of raw coffee with the caramels and maillard compounds that form during a roast. That balance will present itself slightly differently for each of our coffees.
CLASSIC / PROGRESSIVE
As you will notice on our coffees page, we class our coffees into two broad roast categories, ‘Progressive' and 'Classic'. With our ‘progressive’ coffees, we let the inherent "raw" flavours sing a little louder, whilst our ‘classic’ coffees have more obvious roast-centric flavours in the spotlight. While bitterness has its place in every coffee, there is enough of that in each raw coffee without us ever feeling it is necessary to add more of that through the roast process. For this reason, even our darkest roasts are still very moderate medium roasts, relative to the full spectrum of coffee roasts available in the market today.
We dispatch orders every Tuesday and Friday. Our next dispatch date is Tuesday 21 August