One of the things that we take GREAT pride in at CRCR is that we are very particular about how, and WHAT, we roast.
We use nothing but Specialty Grade, 100% Arabica beans. With the help of our importers (we are currently using three different U.S. based importers) we make certain that we find the best beans available.
First off, we may need to explain what we mean by “Specialty Grade.” This refers to the number of defects that can be found in the green coffee beans. Here is how the SCAA determines what is and isn’t Specialty Grade
Grade 1: Specialty Grade Coffee Beans: no primary defects, 0-3 full defects, sorted with a maximum of 5% above and 5% below specified screen size or range of screen size, and exhibiting a distinct attribute in one or more of the following areas: taste, acidity, body, or aroma. Also must be free of cup faults and taints.
Grade 2: Premium Grade Coffee Beans: Same as Grade 1 except maximum of 3 quakers. 0-8 full defects.
Source: Green Coffee Classification System Poster from the Specialty Coffee Association of America.
In addition to the number of defects, each coffee is given a “Score” to see how well it stands up when roasted. On a 100 point scale, a Specialty Grade coffee needs to score 80 or above.
I’ll talk more about OUR processes soon, but now you’ve got a little background in what we’re dealing with.