What we discover in our Coffee Lab  really does make a huge difference to the way we operate.

Working with local universities (and students from around the world), we've carried out dozens of studies on the science of flavour, freshness and much more.



roaster

The Roastery

Our Probat drum coffee roasters are as traditional as they come. (Except for the advanced roast-control software.) As for our micro-lot coffees, these are hand roasted in the smaller Italian 'Vittoria' traditional drum roaster, in batches of just 15-25kg.  We celebrate each individual farm's unique terroir through carefully developed and evolving roast profiles.

It depends on the beans, but light roasts usually have quite a green aroma. Expect bright acidity, citrusy flavours and a noticeably astringent aftertaste.  Medium roasts add more body and a caramel nose - along with nutty, chocolaty flavours and a smooth aftertaste. The darker roasts hit you with a smokier aroma and low acidity. Cocoa flavours give way to a more bitter aftertaste.



freshness

Freshness

Air is bad: it turns coffee stale, and stale doesn't taste too good. The trick is to get our coffee into packs straight from the roaster. We'll use anything that keeps air out of the mix - from nitrogen to one-way valves and clever triple-walled laminate packaging.

Then there's delivery. We get our coffee to you as quickly as possible. If you choose our 'Freshly Roasted' coffee, you're guaranteed to receive it no later than seven days after it was roasted.

cryogenic grinder

Cryogenic Grinding

Grinding means heat. And heat kills the fragile compounds that give good coffee its irresistible aroma. But what if you prefer your coffee pre-ground?

Easy. We super-cool our grinder blades using liquid nitrogen. The blade never gets hot, so we can grind straight from the roaster. In fact, the blade is finely chopping the beans rather than grinding them. Altogether, it means we protect those flavours and aromas in the cup.

cupping 2

Cupping

This is how we test coffee for aroma, taste, mouth-feel and quality. First, we roast a tiny sample - never more than 300g. We aim for a medium colour, then we coarsely grind the beans - and get busy with our noses and taste buds.

It's the only way to make sure the taste is just right.