Quick guide on coffee roasting

Process - Disclosure

When we buy a coffee, we tend to look at its origin and how it has been fermented, but it is the roasting that clearly and directly explains to us what aromatic profile this coffee will have.

The flavor of a cup of coffee is determined, to a great extent, by the roast that is given to the green coffee. Depending on the sensory characteristics of each coffee, defined by its terroir (combination of soil, climate, variety, cultivation care and fermentation process), we will choose one roast or another for each lot.

Thus, if we have a coffee with floral notes, we will apply a filter roast, which is a method of elaboration that will enhance those notes. If, on the other hand, the coffee has predominant notes of nuts and chocolate, we will roast it for espresso. At NOMAD COFFEE we do it this way: we like to have very fruity, floral and herbal coffees for filter coffees and sweeter and fuller-bodied coffees for espresso. However, we never forget those of you who want your filter coffee with a chocolate flavor or a floral or fruity espresso.


Espresso roast

We do it this way: we have the espresso coffee slightly longer in the roaster, and it will have a slightly higher temperature than the coffee that is roasted for filter. The idea is to caramelize the sugars more and gain a little more body in the cup. El Roble, one of our Colombian espressos, perfectly displays its notes of peach, floral honey and orange with this roast.

Filter roast

On the other hand, filter roasts seek to enhance the enzymatic notes of the coffee, those of fruits, flowers and herbs, which are produced during the cultivation and processing of the beans. Our Nyanjuki, from Kenya, is a good example of this, with its mixture of aromatic notes of caramel, orange blossom and watermelon, which generate a coffee with bright acidity and creamy body.

Types of roasting

In addition, there are many types of roasting. According to the general classification, from more acidic to more bitter, we have light, medium, medium-dark and dark roasts. All of them indicate the color of the bean after roasting, and have subtypes: light, cinnamon, medium, high, city, full city, French and Italian. Within this scale, there are some roasters that have a single profile for all their coffees and call it omniroast, but at NOMAD COFFEE we use a light roast, in which the origin of the coffee shines through and no oils are generated on the surface of the bean. Specifically, we use a light roast for filter coffees, which will highlight their fruity aromas, and a cinnamon roast, which is ideal for our espresso coffees.


Learning to roast coffee

If you have ever proposed to make the step from barista to coffee roaster, the first thing you should know is that you do not need great equipment: to learn to roast you start by learning to taste, to identify aromas, flavors, types of acidity and body, bean and roasting defects. Only in this way will you be able to evaluate the coffees that you roast, improve your roasting and try new ways and profiles until you find the formulas that you like the most, that adapt to you and your target public.

Learning times are relative. To learn how to cup, you can sign up for our Coffee Academy course, where we will prepare you for the Q Grader certificate. If you start working in an established roastery, the protocols and identity will already be defined, and it will only take you a few weeks to replicate their roasts. On the other hand, to master roasting, if you want to create a coffee roastery from scratch, it will take you years in which you will have to look for the machine and the coffees that best suit your needs, get to know its operation in depth, create work protocols and, finally, find your personal brand in the roasting profile. In particular, you will spend a lot of effort in taming the machine used, which makes the way of roasting change ostensibly, since each one has its own way of distributing the heat in the bean, with different probes and in different positions that generate a different roasting profile in each one.


Toasting step by step

These are the most relevant steps we do when roasting coffee with our two Probat UG22 machines. First of all, we will do a test roast, with a small quantity, in our Ikawa Pro50. And we will always keep in mind that the heating protocol lasts 1 hour, the protocol between roasts 8 minutes (including 6 minutes of coffee cooling to stop the roasting), the roasting itself between 10 minutes and a half (filter) and 13 minutes (espresso), depending on the coffee and its roasting profile. In addition, each coffee will require a different espresso or filter profile, as each has its own roast profile and behaves differently inside the roaster, so we will have to make the appropriate adjustments according to the batch.


  1. 1 .Check the temperature of the green grain.
  2. 2. Check the ambient temperature in the roasting area.
  3. 3. Create a pre-heating protocol and a protocol between roasting and roasting, and strictly adhere to them.
  4. 4. Check the inlet temperature of the green coffee to the roaster.
  5. 5. Control the RoR (Rate of Rise) or Rate of increase of the temperature of the grain during roasting. This is the rate at which the grain gains temperature and the best results on NOMAD are when this figure is always decreasing.
  6. 6. Control the outlet temperature
  7. 7. To evaluate the roasted coffee, that is to say, to taste.
  8. 8. If the profile is not adequate, make the necessary changes and roast again.