Golden Bean

December 8, 2014

Home Roaster Espresso Winner

Richard Davies

Mr Orange

I began home roasting in July 2013 and managed to score Silver and Bronze Medals in last year’s Golden Bean competition. Improving the result this year by coming away with Gold for my espresso is a fantastic feeling.
The coffee is from Santa Rosa 1900 in the mountainous Tarrazu region of Costa Rica. The producers are a father and son business dedicated to growing high quality, high altitude, micro-lot coffees reflecting the character of the region. This particular coffee, a washed Caturra from their “Trapiche” farm, is a beauty. It rates an SCAA cup score of 91 and, with only ten bags available in the last crop, it’s pretty rare.
With raw material as special as this, honestly, I’m just relieved I didn’t ruin it! To give you an idea of how it tastes, aromas of orange blossom, mandarin zest and fresh grapes jump out. In the cup these combine with crisp, roasted characters, grapey acidity and sweetness, mid body and a long, clean, intense finish. Lovely stuff!
It was great to tell the supplier of the green coffee, Paul Golding at Plantation Direct, about the win. The “Trapiche” is one of his favourite coffees too, so he was especially pleased this won Gold. When Paul told the farmer in Costa Rica, he was proud that one of his coffees had medalled in the Golden Bean. Actually, he requested a copy of the medal certificate to hang on the wall at Santa Rosa 1900. The guys at Café Culture have been happy to oblige, and it’s nice to think The Golden Bean will be out there at origin, in coffee country 2 kilometres high.
I would definitely recommend home roasting to others who want to get to know coffee better and have creative control of what’s in their cup. Anyone interested should have a look at forums like, where there is a friendly and helpful coffee community to help get them started. There are plenty of equipment options to roast your own coffee. I use a Gene Café roaster, which is compact, simple and very controllable. However, now I’m hooked, it would be nice to scale up to something bigger!

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