Have you ever thought what makes coffee so delicious and varied? It’s definitely not the green, raw bean but it is the roasted one. Whenever raw beans are exposed to heat, they release and produce oils. Moreover, coffee roasting also gives flavors and colors when the natural sugars of coffee beans are caramelized upon heating. These days, every one of you can easily find coffee at your local retail store, however, it is very hard to find beans roasted within the previous 4 weeks at most! Reason why Freshly Roasted Specialty Coffee beans are so valuable and are produced in a lower scale compared to those found at your local retail chain which can easily have spent 2 months in those shelves before your checkout!

Nowadays, coffee is among the most famous drinks… But, have you ever thought for how long the process of coffee roasting is in use and who discovered it for the first time? Well! There is a whole story behind coffee roasting. Before going into the detail coffee roasting and specialty coffee roasting, let’s briefly discuss about raw coffee beans. You would be surprised to know that coffee was first discovered by goats. At that time, goats and their owners ‘Galla Tribe’ were the only ones who chewed them in the raw form.

Traditional Ethiopian Coffee Roasting

Before 13th century, Sheikh Omar succeeded in revealing the advantages of coffee roasting in Saudi Arabia. Omar was evicted into the desert all alone and everyone thought he will soon die because of starvation. There was nothing to eat in the desert, reason why Omar began eating coffee berries. In order to overcome the bitterness of raw (green) coffee beans, he used to roast them in a very artisanal way and then put them in water. Every time, Omar drank this specialty coffee, he became revitalized and refreshed due to its amazing properties (then unknown). He made his survival possible due to coffee roasting and drinking.

In 14th century, Arabs started roasting coffee beans over fire before crushing them up in the animal fat. They termed this specialty coffee ‘qahwa’, which was used to prevent sleepiness. With the passage of time, coffee roasting became famous among other empires and every culture adopted a distinctive roasting technique. However, the most common method was roasting the coffee beans over open fire and later baking them in ovens. It was the era before Industrial Revolution that is why there was no big roasting equipment. Specialty coffee drinking became so famous that, in 1453 under Constantinople, Turks in Ottoman Empire modified their “divorce law” by including ‘lack of coffee on daily basis’ as the ground for a woman to divorce her spouse. Wow!

By 1880s, big roasting equipment was introduced that fact has streamlined all the roasting methods we know nowadays. With the popularity of coffee roasting in the late 1880s, some laws were enforced to protecting the buyers from buying coffee which was mixed with other substances. In 1875, the first laws were passed by Germany to assure coffee purity. During the 2nd half of 19th century, several experiments were carried out with coffee roasters, roasted ventilations and cylinders. By 1889, a resident of Braunschweig ‘Carl Salomon’ introduced a fast roasting method by taking into consideration the theory of hot gas ventilation. He noticed that this technique decreased the roasting time by 20 minutes. Soon after the popularity of Salmon’s roasting method, many roasters started applying it until it slowly became what we know nowadays.