We are proud to announce that we won the 2009 Nordic Roaster Competition.
For those of you not familiar with the competition, it is a competition for roasteries that normally takes place during the Nordic Barista Cup. This years competition was held in Iceland and there were 10 different roasteries entering from countries such as Denmark, Finland, Sweden, Norway, Iceland and the UK.
The format was the same as previous years. All roasteries were to deliver 2 kg of coffee roasted for filter brewing. The only things we could decide as a competitor, (apart from the coffee we used and the roast profile) was how many grams to use per litre. All coffees were ground on the same grinder and brewed on BUNN brewers set to a specific brew profile by Mike Khan, the brewmaser representing BUNN.
The coffees were brewed more or less at the same time and poured into numbered cups in order to make the tasting blind. All attendees at this years Nordic Barista Cup got a sample of each coffee and a piece of paper where they wrote down the number of the cup they liked the best.
Votes were collected, and after counting the votes the top 3 coffees came from the following roasteries:
1st: Tim Wendelboe (Norway) – with coffee from Tekangu coop. in Nyeri, Kenya.
2nd: Solberg & Hansen (Norway) – with coffee from Finca Kilimanjaro, El Salvador.
3rd: Kaffitar (Iceland) – with coffee from Rwanda.
The coffee that we entered with was our favourite Kenyan coffee of the year from Tekangu coop. society in Nyeri. It was a production roast (which means we just took 2 kg of a random roast from our production).
Tim V and I normally work a lot with our roast profiles, so we felt confident that we were allready roasting this coffee as we liked it. Although Tim V is doing most of the roasting from a day to day basis, I am the one responsible for developing the profiles because it is my name on the bags and therefore my taste needs to be reflected in the coffees. So we pretty much work as a team. I play around with the coffees and Tim V translates the profiles I have developed on the 1 kg Probatino on to the 15 kg production roaster. We also taste every roast we produce together and discuss the coffees and what we need to do to improve it. This is probably the most enjoyable part of working as a roaster as the green coffee changes all the time and therefore we need to adjust the roast profiles accordingly.
It was only three weeks ago where we noticed that the Tekangu was not tasting as good as it was when we started producing the coffee earlier this summer. We looked in to our roast logs and discovered that Tim V had been slowing down the roast with about 30 seconds over a period of time. We decided to roast 2 different profiles the following day. The 2 roasts came out with the same degree of roast, was dumped on the same end temperature. The only noticeable difference was the total roasting time. One batch was roasted for 10:50 minutes and the other for 11: 05 minutes. When we tasted these 2 cofees next to eachother it was 2 different worlds. The 11:05 minute roast tasted smoky, flat and dull. The 10:50 roast was fruity, clean, crisp and lively and therefore this is the roast profile that we are currently aiming at when we roast Tekangu and this was the profile for our entry in the Nordic Roaster competition.
We know the roast profile is quite fast and we roast the coffee very light. We do this in order to enhance the natural aromas of the coffee without getting any disturbing roast aromas. This makes the coffee quite crisp in acidity, very clean and intensely aromatic with a sweet lingering finish.
If you haven’t tried the Tekangu coffee yet, we really recommend tasting it next to our other Kenyan coffee from the Kiawamururu factory.
I really hope you like it.
ps. You can read more about the Tekangu coffee here.