The colorimeter: the device that scientifically verifies our medium roasting


“We love to savor every aromatic nuance of coffee. For this reason we decided to use medium roasting"

One of the topics about coffee that is more and more discussed is the kind of roasting of the beans.

We hear about light, dark, medium roasting, cinnamon and much more. But once again there is really little clarity about this.

As a roaster I often buy coffees roasted by others and I am always intrigued when the labels says that the beans are "medium-light" roasted, but I cannot tell you how many times I am disappointed when I realized that the beans inside the bag are not at all medium roasted.

As it is true that "not all that glitters are gold" also not all medium roasted coffees are actually roasted at an intermediate level.

However, there is a small, simple, intuitive and clear tool that can be used to prove the level of roasting of a coffee in a technical-scientific way: the colorimeter.

With the colorimeter test, the level of roasting of both the beans and the ground coffee can be definitively and unequivocally verified.

As we have seen in the video, it is a really handy and simple tool to use.

First of all it must be calibrated on its specific gray disk.

After which the coffee to be tested is selected, poured into the special tray and shaved to make the surface as homogeneous and smooth as possible.

You place the colorimeter above the product, select beans or ground in the device, based on what you are testing, and activate the measurement.

To obtain more reliable results, it is always better to make several measurements, even on different samples of the same roast, in order to be sure that all the beans have been roasted in the same way and are without chromatic defects.

After that, all the data obtained will be averaged and the actual roasting level of our coffees will be obtained.

As you can see the colorimeter is very clear and defines in a very direct way the level of roasting of our coffees, defining it: medium-light (medium light - 63.1 / 100).

The reasons why we decided to adopt an average level of roasting for our coffees are many, among which the main ones are:

  1. Intense and complex aromas - We select only the best origins to always obtain fine coffees, rich in aromatic nuances;
  2. It is also excellent without sugar - Thanks to the exclusive medium roasting, the coffee bean is not burnt and the flavors are not lost. You can eliminate unnecessary calories from your diet by tasting the balanced intensity of coffee;
  3. To find a perfect balance between sweetness and intensity - The quality of our green coffees (raw material), guarantees a wealth of aromas on the palate: flowers, citrus fruits, cocoa, chocolate, tobacco, malt, fruit and much more. It's your choice ...
  4. For the energy you need - Medium roasting allows you to obtain a coffee with a higher concentration of caffeine.

The other main roasting levels are light and dark:

  • The light roasting further enhances the aromas and delicate acidities present in the coffees, but does not attribute body and cream in the final result in the cup. For this reason, in Italy, the home of espresso, it is not widely used, since it would make our cups too little full-bodied and therefore not suitable for our tastes;
  • The dark roasting instead makes the espresso more bitter. In fact, by roasting the coffees a lot, you almost get to the point of burning them (some roasters actually burn them). In this way the strong aromatic scent of ash or burnt and the strong bitterness manage to hide all the other defects of the low quality raw beans, such as mold, wet wood, rubber, rancid and so on. Those looking for a greater profit on their products prefer to buy low quality green coffee and pay it at a lower price, then going to hide the defects with this process.

That's why we at Ernani have opted for medium roasting, which is able to enhance the positive qualities of our fine coffees and to attribute body and a velvety cream in a cup.

Try it and let yourself be surprised by the incredible aromatic notes of the coffee you have chosen.

Paolo Sangalli

Head Roaster at Ernani 

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