Filter roast or Espresso roast?

Surely when buying specialty coffee you have come across the ask: “Do you want it roasted for filter or for espresso?” and you haven't knew what to answer. In this post we explain what each one means and how. choose the right one.

First things first, coffee is a seed that is extracted from a cherry that comes from the coffee tree. Green grains (raw) are insoluble and They need to be roasted to release the aromas and flavors we know as coffee.

When coffee consumption was established as a commodity (a product that is marketed on a large scale and at low cost) the consumer does not cared about the care of the grain, much less about the roasting and the The results in the cup were extremely bitter. The drink was consumed as a stimulating.

With the arrival of The third wave of coffee , we enter the world of Specialty Coffee. The toasters started to worry about the care of the green grain, as well as the different roasting phases. The result in the cup was undoubtedly another world, they found sweet and complex flavors. Following the investigation, and taking into account the number of extraction methods that existed, they began to be developed different roasting profiles that provide balance to the extractions.

But how does roasting work?

It is an extremely complex science that does not follow the same pattern. Each toaster chooses his profile. As Rob Hoos explains to us in his book “Fundamentals of roasting” you can choose between an apple, a caramelized apple, caramel or charcoal. We explain what this means.

On a general level, a roast with a longer development gives us more caramelization (sweetness) and less acidity. Therefore, for drinks concentrated with a short extraction such as espresso or coffee in Italian coffee maker we will get cups with an acidity that does not overwhelm us, much sweetness and greater body. This development also has sufficient strength to to hold the weight of the milk and complement its flavor well.

Does this mean that filter roast is not as sweet?

Not at all, filter roasting also develops caramelization. By being more diluted drinks, we can retain a higher degree of acidity and enjoy complex flavors (such as floral or fruity) without being overwhelming. It is important to emphasize that not all roasters work with differentiation between roasts and that the preference of each consumer also comes into play.

In conclusion, if your extraction method is an espresso machine or a Italian coffee maker, we recommend a coffee with a more developed roast. Yeah On the contrary, you use filter coffee makers, a roast with less development It will be able to provide greater balance to your drink.

Valentina Cartechini.

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