What makes Midnight Coal Company coffee so great? Well, let's walk backwards a little bit to gain a better understanding. The coffee you drink, no matter where it's from or who roasts it, has to come from the ground before it reaches your cup. Coffee is nothing more than a fruit that grows in particular regions of the world, based on the climate and soil conditions. The fruit is harvested and the seeds (you may call them beans) are extracted for mill processing to be sent out to roasters all over the globe. Once the green coffee seed arrives to its destination, it's up to the roaster to transform that harvested crop into the sensationally aromatic and tasty commodity that we know it to be. If coffee seeds are properly roasted and cared for, you're going to know it. If they're not, well...you're going to know that too. So to answer our initial question; it's people. People are what make our coffee some of the best coffee there is in the world. The farmers we rely on care about producing the highest quality crop just as deeply as we care about roasting it to perfection, no matter your preference of roast.
Behind the Scenes
Once the green seeds arrive, we get to work on sampling the coffee to verify moisture levels, the roasting time needed per batch, degassing time required for peak flavor attributes, and tasting to build the flavor profile you'll want to know about when you purchase a bag. Our unique roasting method plays one of the biggest roles in why our coffee tastes so good. We use a special hand-crafted machine that roasts the coffee seeds in a rotating glass cylinder over infrared heating bulbs. The majority of coffee roasting companies will use an industrial roaster that requires a steel drum to be heated over an open gas flame as it rotates the seeds evenly. Unfortunately, there is a chemical reaction that takes place when the steel is heated and coffee is roasting inside it. This creates that all-too-familiar "bitterness" with an almost slightly metallic taste. That familiar sharpness is removed when the seeds are roasted in glass. Once the coffee reaches about 200-204 degrees, we can turn off the heat and drop the seeds over the cooling fans to bring the temperature down.
Industrial roasters can push out large quantities in a short amount of time, but that means they have to reach upwards of 400 degrees to get the seeds roasted. Coffee is a delicate process that can't be perfected if it is rushed. Our roasting machine is rated for 500 grams at a time. That's just over one pound of coffee per roast! How's that for small batch? More established companies can boast about having 100lbs of coffee roasted, bagged, and ready for sale in a matter of hours. Us? Well, we can guarantee that a single pound of coffee will be ready for you in about 3-4 days. Why so long? Well, that's a secret that we will only reveal if you come by the shop and ask to know.
We feel that side-by-side against other coffees you may love, there is no competition. Our coffee wins every time because we inspect the quality of every seed from it's arrival to when we finally seal it in your hand-written bag, initialed with the signature of the dude that roasted it.
He's SERIOUS about coffee!
Upon exiting the military in 2013, Kyle began working in telecommunications for the third largest communications infrastructure on the planet. It was a sweet gig for a while, but there was still an itch for something more fulfilling. Remembering jobs from before the Army, Kyle danced around the idea of a coffee shop as he had worked in his parent's shop as a teenager. It was one of the most rewarding jobs he could think of. Oddly enough, the idea of mixing Macchiatos and cooking breakfast and lunch items didn't sound as appealing anymore. However, coffee was still alive and kicking as an idea with heart and passion. So in 2018 Kyle decided to start investigating the art and science of roasting coffee. Roasting is a very unique craft that offers incredibly vast opportunities and relationships with farmers and consumers alike. That was it! A roastery is what needed to happen!