The week that was
It's been a busy two weeks. It began with roasting sessions on the Huky, calibrating the thermocouples (thermometers) to the Artisan (roast logging) software. Yeah, I had to look up a glossary too. Talk about getting my geek on!
After a crash course in DIY, it all sounded fairly straightforward until I remembered that my only experience with Fahrenheit was adjusting the air conditioning dial in the middle of the night at an American Motel. My inexperience with this bizarre measurement showed throughout the roast, the constant conversions teaching me nothing about roasting but a whole lot about patience.
A dig around on some roasting forums discovered there was of course an easy fix. Perhaps previously blinded by frustration I was now able to dig my way through 'tools' and discovered the switch of hope. Switching those settings in Artisan to convert and record in celsius was a more satisfying moment than hearing that first crack.
Another roast in, the Sumatran beans were now profiling well. Adhering to Scott Rao's commandments, Artisan was showing an ever decreasing ROR and a stable and well performing roast. The aroma then confirmed that finally we had the set up right! A few high fives and a Postmark later, it was time to call it a day.
Saturday morning was a trip to the airport, boarding a flight to San Francisco. Will and I had booked into a Specialty Coffee Association of America (SCAA) course run by Willem Boot to start some formal roasting training. The course covered the basics of specialty coffee, including guides on SCAA cupping and brew techniques.
Although some of the content was familiar territory to us both, we learnt a lot from our instructor and fellow class mates. Beyond the fascinating content, we picked up some ideas for future coffee workshops at Groundswell, and made some great contacts in both social enterprise and coffee roasting.
Over the Golden Gate straight to the airport gate, we were back in Vancouver. The week ahead was to be one of electrical panels, exhausts and green beans. Stay tuned for the next chapter...
Yours in coffee, Attie