Roasting

Seed to Cup Part 2 Roasting Class Recap by Steve Willingham

Thank you to everyone that came out to our Seed to Cup Part 2 Roasting Class! We had a blast and can't wait for the next one. 

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Find more info here if you want learn more about roasting. If you want to be notified about the next class, sign up for our newsletter. We will be doing classes monthly with some special mini classes as well. Be the first to know so you can snag a spot before these fill up!

Check out these photos from the class. See if you can find yourself!

Heart Roasters by Caleb Savage

If you’ve stopped by the shop more than once or twice, there’s a pretty solid chance you’ve had coffee from our friends at Heart Coffee Roasters. Not only does their packaging blend into the clean and crisp vibes on the retail shelves, their coffee is exactly what Steve and the team looks for in deciding what coffees to feature at Clarity. I got to hear from Ryan Cross, Director of Wholesale for Heart Coffee Roasters, to learn about the Heart story and what makes their coffee so outstanding.

Alex Pond roasting samples (Photo courtesy of Heart Roasters)

Alex Pond roasting samples (Photo courtesy of Heart Roasters)

Heart opened its doors on October 20, 2009 with the purpose to “create an exceptional coffee experience through uncompromising quality.” For founders Wille and Rebekah Yli-Luoma, roasting coffee is about highlighting the natural qualities of the coffee: “Our goal is to offer coffees from various regions around the world that showcase distinct flavors that are found in the coffees from each specific region.”

Roasting with Care

It seems like nearly every coffee I get to drink from Heart not only honors the origin of the coffee in flavor, but does so with a clarity in taste and note that’s difficult to find with other roasters. This comes from a devotion to origin and natural fruit flavors the coffee has throughout the roasting process.

Our focus is uncompromising quality.

“Coffee is a seasonal product, the seed of a fruit, and should be treated with care-from start to finish. The belief is that as a roasting company, there is always something to be learned & room for improvement. We strive to push ourselves to be able to offer our customers the very best coffee we can. The foundation of Heart is a love of coffee, with a passion to innovate and produce the most delicious cup.” This level of care leads to the ideal Heart coffee, a coffee with “fruitiness and delicate sweet notes, along with a rich body, and pronounced acidity.”

(Photo courtesy of Heart Roasters)

(Photo courtesy of Heart Roasters)

Packaging for Transparency

“At heart, our approach is simple,” reads the back of every retail bag. “The coffee cherry is a fruit. Coffee is seasonal. We consider these facts when we source and roast the coffee. Our focus is uncompromising quality. Enjoy.” This insight to how Heart chooses and roasts its coffee isn’t the only thing Heart is willing to discuss. From the specifics of the individual plants and processing of the cherries, to the milling process, the costs involved at all levels and how quickly the green (unroasted) coffee can make it to Heart to be roasted; Heart is dedicated to telling the full story.

We are in it for the long run and want to be sure our farmers are being paid a fair price

“We understand that it costs a lot of money to produce the quality we are asking the farmers to provide us. It is expensive to produce the quality we are asking the farmers to provide us. This is why open communication with our farmers is important. We are in it for the long run and want to be sure our farmers are being paid a fair price, and feel good about their relationship with heart.”

Aurelio Villatoro cupping El Amate and his other coffees with some of the Heart crew (Photo courtesy of Heart Roasters)

Aurelio Villatoro cupping El Amate and his other coffees with some of the Heart crew (Photo courtesy of Heart Roasters)

We love our friends at Heart and are excited to see the opening of their third location in Portland soon. Right now you can find their Guatemala El Amate on both the espresso bar and the Chemex bar, so come have a cup with us!

KLLR Coffee Roasters by Caleb Savage

Since we first heard about KLLR, the team at Clarity has been really excited to taste and serve KLLR Coffee at the shop. Hopefully, you’ve been able to try some of their offerings over the last couple days and heard a little bit about the company.  In case you haven’t, we got to talk to our friends at KLLR and find out a little bit more about the company, the coffee, and where you can try some K(i)LL(e)R coffee.

Oklahoma has a phenomenal coffee community. Even setting aside Tulsa’s great companies like Topeca, Foolish Things, Cirque, and more, Oklahoma City offers a variety of places to try coffee in all of its food and drink combinations, locations, and style. While some may raise an eyebrow to “another” coffee company in the Big Friendly, KLLR is hoping to come alongside the community already established:

“We’re really lucky to have a community filled with passionate, intelligent coffee professionals as well as home baristas and just coffee shop junkies. But we aren’t starting KLLR in spite of the developed coffee culture. We’re starting KLLR because of it. There are hundreds, maybe thousands, of people in Oklahoma City who want to progress in their coffee skills and knowledge. We see KLLR as an opportunity to provide the resources and tools to do so.”

KLLR is focused on “making great coffee and supporting the people who make it.”  Whether that’s training, equipment, or fantastic coffee, KLLR is looking to serve both the professional barista and the coffee enthusiast.

If you’ve checked out their website, you’ll notice a straightforward approach to their offerings. In the name of stability,  KLLR buys coffee first for quality and second for consistency.

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“But by having a core lineup of two Ethiopias, a Colombia, and an Espresso Blend, we’re able to give some consistency within our lineup. However, within that core lineup will be a variety of coffees throughout the year. You’ll see new Ethiopian coffees and Colombian coffees, new coffees for the Espresso Blend throughout the year. Then we’re also going to keep smaller lots of coffee regularly under the name Small Batch. These will be particularly special coffees that we find that aren’t necessarily right for the regular lineup.”

Located in Uptown 23rd, just down the street from the Tower Theatre, UR/BUN, and the newly opened Scottie's Deli, KLLR is excited to be roasting coffee for shops, restaurants, and the people of OKC. You can find KLLR at Native Roots, Hall's Pizza Kitchen, Crimson & Whipped Cream, Cafe Kacao, and even as a Cold Brew Smoothie at Wheeze the Juice! You’ll always be able to grab a bag off our shelves at the shop and we’ll be featuring their coffees alongside our usual roasters as well other new and exciting coffees and companies we find along the way!

A sketch of KLLR Coffee HQ by the talented folks at  405 Architecture

A sketch of KLLR Coffee HQ by the talented folks at 405 Architecture

We’re thrilled to welcome KLLR Coffee Roasters into the Oklahoma City Coffee community and can’t wait to see what’s in store for them in the future! We’ll be serving both their Washed Ethiopia and Colombia over the next couple days, you won’t want to miss it!

 

Coma Coffee Roasters by Caleb Savage

Coma Coffee Roasters promises to bring uncompromised quality, due respect to a coffee’s origin, and a platform for learning, expression, and experimentation to St. Louis, Missouri and the greater coffee community. We got to hear from Connor James who serves as Coma’s Coffee Programs & Account Manager to learn a little bit more about Coma, St. Louis, and of course, coffee.

Connor James roasting something tasty (Photo courtesy of Coma Coffee)

Connor James roasting something tasty (Photo courtesy of Coma Coffee)

WHO IS COMA COFFEE?

Founded by siblings Corbin and Macy Holtzman (COrbin + MAcy = COMA) in July 2016, Coma was founded with the idea to bring a quality coffee and a community space to the University Tower, located in central St. Louis. Along with Connor, this team of twenty-somethings are passionate and ready to make an impact in the world of coffee:

“We are fortunate enough to find ourselves amidst this industry at a very impressionable time. Coffee is in a transitional period of sorts, and we are quite literally reshaping how coffee is understood and experienced.”  

These high expectations are coupled with an emphasis on connecting consumers with the story and history of a coffee’s origin as well as offering a space for creativity, humility, and experimentation within the cafe experience.

Barista Cameron McCarty (Photo courtesy of Coma Coffee)

Barista Cameron McCarty (Photo courtesy of Coma Coffee)

Inside University Tower, you’ll find a beautiful Synesso MVP espresso machine paired with high-ceilings, giant windows, and marble countertops. There, you’ll be able to taste coffees roasted for “optimal sweetness without compromising acidity.” While this is the ideal, each coffee is roasted to it’s own, distinct profile to ensure that each coffee is presented as best as possible. Every cup of Coma coffee should be “sweet and acidic with a lingering, lasting session.” 

ST. LOUIS FOOD & DRINK GUIDE

If you find yourself in St. Louis, Connor has some great recommendations for what to do after you’ve found your Coma caffeine fix:

“For drinks, Blood & Sand, a speakeasy style restaurant and bar. There is literally nothing they don’t do extremely well. Check out Four Hands Brewing for their IPA’s, Urban Chestnut for their Old-World Style beers, Perennial for their sours and Earthbound brewery for something funky and experimental.  For food, I swear by everything local chef hero Gerard Craft does. He has numerous restaurants around the city with different ethos and styles; a few to name are Taste, Sardellas, and Pastaria.  For experience, check out Art Hill surrounded by St. Louis Forest Park. Our art museum sitting atop the hill, overlooks a gorgeous fountain and skyline view of the city in addition to showcasing some of the most splendid paintings, sculptures and cultural pieces.”

WHAT'S NEXT?

Big things are in store for Coma as they celebrate their 2nd place finish at Coffee Fest Chicago in America’s Best Cold Brew Competition.  

Photo courtesy of Coma Coffee

Photo courtesy of Coma Coffee

This victory comes just in time with their launch of large scale Cold Brew distribution in St. Louis.  Be on the lookout for their Cold Brew in restaurants on tap!  Also coming soon to the Coma Coffee family is work on creating a shared space for their roaster and a new cafe in STL.

We’re so excited to share Coma’s passion and energy for coffee and community with you in Oklahoma City.