I have a friend who works at a restaurant where they cook everything with a wood fire oven.  He said they buy their coffee from a roaster in town, and then roast it in their oven for a couple minutes before serving.  Mind you, they're not buying greens, they're buying roasted coffee, and then roasting it again. Has anyone tried this?  Any ideas if it would negatively impact the flavor?  In order to not burn it you'd have to start with a lighter roast I imagine, and then you'd be adding a ton of smoky flavor.  Why not just start out with a french and be done with it?

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Joe,

At our roastery we dabble in double roasting for some of our espresso. We have what we feel is some pretty sound theory to why it produces a different flavor at various roast levels, but we do NOT do it in this manner, nor could I see advising someone to do it this way.

As far as just roasting it to french and being done with it, roasting it twice does result in a sweeter flavor at darker roasts then just roasting it straight through (following the same profile). At the end of the day I suppose its all a matter of what you want and if you are getting that consistently, and if this gentleman is then whose to say it's a bad thing?
I'm not sure about this double roasting thing, but roasting coffee in an oven is probably not a good idea.
I have seen home roasters use an oven to roast coffee, but never for a cafe. I would think the smoke would become a problem, granted it depends on how your set up...

here is a vid of oven roasting on youtube

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gslCRG1aBBE&feature=related
JOE! I did this once when we were toying with that black-n-white blend we know so well. Experiment: It was a guat-guat, I dropped it all light, brought the roaster to a lower temp and watched the roast get to the Italian I so desired. Results: the flavor of the second, darker were close to, but more mellow than, the 'original', non double-roasted Italian. It's fine, but I'd wager needs more attention and is likely to cause fire.

We talked about this before, I believe, and now both have experience with fire (read: beach) roasting. Sure adds smoke (Ahem, 'roastiness') but doesn't cover the quality or lack thereof of the final cup.

My guess: they want to say 'it's roasted on sight!' and is probably less about getting the wood-smoked flavor I'd assume they have in their final product, although I'd call the addition of both 'smoke' and 'on sight' a quality unique in their area, no?
As a commercial coffee roaster I could see adding smoke flavor for fun and taste but this can be done with out roasting the bean any more than it was when you received it.
Joe
Yes I remember you telling this story once before. However, your experience, as well as other experiences described in other comments imply that the double roasting was done immediately. What is happening in this scenario is, the coffee has been roasted, has a few days to degas, and is then roasted again.

I am NOT calling the act of fire or oven roasting into question. Both you and I have accomplished it with varying amounts of success, ranging from crap, to pretty good. With more practice I believe it could rival more advanced roasting methods.

Since I posted this discussion, I have been to said establishment and tasted said double roasted coffee. There is an intense smoky flavor, however it contains trace amounts of brightness more likely to be found in a lighter roast. It was also not fresh, as this is lunch/dinner pizza grill type place, (No, Matt, I have not tried the pizza). Leading me to wonder why they would even bother taking the time to double roast their coffee if they're not brewing much in the first place? Their purposes seem to be strictly for image and advertising. That is a different discussion for a different day, however.

In the meantime, this method of double roasting seems to add smoke flavor to a coffee without eliminating the characteristics of a lighter roast. Interesting, indeed.

Matt Fitzwater said:
JOE! I did this once when we were toying with that black-n-white blend we know so well. Experiment: It was a guat-guat, I dropped it all light, brought the roaster to a lower temp and watched the roast get to the Italian I so desired. Results: the flavor of the second, darker were close to, but more mellow than, the 'original', non double-roasted Italian. It's fine, but I'd wager needs more attention and is likely to cause fire.

We talked about this before, I believe, and now both have experience with fire (read: beach) roasting. Sure adds smoke (Ahem, 'roastiness') but doesn't cover the quality or lack thereof of the final cup.

My guess: they want to say 'it's roasted on sight!' and is probably less about getting the wood-smoked flavor I'd assume they have in their final product, although I'd call the addition of both 'smoke' and 'on sight' a quality unique in their area, no?
Joe,
I'm not sure who you were referring to just now. I have never done this before myself. Just posting thoughts on it as a ahhh, strange practice. Very interesting information. Thanks for sharing.
Joe Robertson

Joe Burns said:
Yes I remember you telling this story once before. However, your experience, as well as other experiences described in other comments imply that the double roasting was done immediately. What is happening in this scenario is, the coffee has been roasted, has a few days to degas, and is then roasted again.

I am NOT calling the act of fire or oven roasting into question. Both you and I have accomplished it with varying amounts of success, ranging from crap, to pretty good. With more practice I believe it could rival more advanced roasting methods.

Since I posted this discussion, I have been to said establishment and tasted said double roasted coffee. There is an intense smoky flavor, however it contains trace amounts of brightness more likely to be found in a lighter roast. It was also not fresh, as this is lunch/dinner pizza grill type place, (No, Matt, I have not tried the pizza). Leading me to wonder why they would even bother taking the time to double roast their coffee if they're not brewing much in the first place? Their purposes seem to be strictly for image and advertising. That is a different discussion for a different day, however.

In the meantime, this method of double roasting seems to add smoke flavor to a coffee without eliminating the characteristics of a lighter roast. Interesting, indeed.

Matt Fitzwater said:
JOE! I did this once when we were toying with that black-n-white blend we know so well. Experiment: It was a guat-guat, I dropped it all light, brought the roaster to a lower temp and watched the roast get to the Italian I so desired. Results: the flavor of the second, darker were close to, but more mellow than, the 'original', non double-roasted Italian. It's fine, but I'd wager needs more attention and is likely to cause fire.

We talked about this before, I believe, and now both have experience with fire (read: beach) roasting. Sure adds smoke (Ahem, 'roastiness') but doesn't cover the quality or lack thereof of the final cup.

My guess: they want to say 'it's roasted on sight!' and is probably less about getting the wood-smoked flavor I'd assume they have in their final product, although I'd call the addition of both 'smoke' and 'on sight' a quality unique in their area, no?
Since people seem to be interested in it, in the new year I will have to put up a thread going over what I play around with and send out some samples to anyone who is interested. At the end of the day its DIFFERENT, bare that in mind. It's not superior or inferior, just different.

Also, when we pull shots with 2x roasted beans, we typically shoot for 207-209 F on our machine. I have a good idea as to why it seems to pull "better" shots at this temp, but thats for another day.

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