Ask the Roast Masters

Roastmaster Emeritus

Roastmaster Emeritus

Paul Katzeff

A leader in specialty coffee for over 40 years, Paul’s passion is working with people and helping folks find their perfect cup. He believes that quality of life on coffee farms = quality coffee.

Roastmaster

Roastmaster

Jacob Long

Jacob has been perfecting the art of roasting since he joined our team in 2007. He is responsible for our green coffee purchases, has received top scores for his roasts, and cups our coffees daily to ensure every roast is perfect.

coffee-questions-800pxAsk Your Question!

There is a vast wealth of coffee know-how between these two gentlemen. If you have a question about coffee, anything from farming practices to cupping methods, ask them with the comments area below.

Comments (38)

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    Bichha

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    Hello,

    Please let me know what is the Bovine Bakery Blend and if I can buy it online?

    Thanks.
    Bichha

    Reply

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      Paul Katzeff

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      The Bovine Bakery Blend is made with equal parts of our 100% Peru and Noyo Harbor French coffees. This special blend can only be found in their fine bakeries. I could tell you no more then that because it is not my decision to make. It is The Bovine Bakery ownership’s decision. They are protective of their blend. They sell their coffee in packages in Point Reyes, but not yet in Petaluma. I hope they will start next week. At least, that is their plan.

      I hope you will not interpret this as elitist on our part or on the Bovine’s part. So ask Carolyn at The Bakery or tell her you are waiting for her to retail the packages. I can tell you this, it is not about the ingredients, and there are five origins represented in the blend, it is about how they are roasted. By that I mean the BTU input profile during roasting, temperature of roast at finish, and time of roast. The countries of origin make up only about 40% of this coffee’s flavor profile.
      Sincerely,
      Paul Katzeff
      CEO

      Reply

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    Lisa

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    Hello,

    I have been drinking your Albion River Inn Blend, which I purhcase from Harvets Market in Fort Bragg for many years. In the past year there seems to be some change in the blend. It does not brew as strong in my drip coffee maker. I’ve purchased diffferent batches and still the same. I even took it to another house with the same coffee maker (and different water) and it still brews weak. I selected a different blend yesterday that was labeled dark and had the same experience. Perhaps our tastes have changed but wondering if you have any comments on this. Thanks.

    Reply

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      Paul Katzeff

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      Dear Lisa,

      One year ago, I changed the blend. It was a blend of French roast and a Light roasted Nicaraguan coffee. In the restaurant setting it was too “Frenchy”, too carbon for a cross section of guests of all ages, backgrounds and cultural biases. So I exchanged the French roast with a slightly lighter Vienna roast. This change unmasked the blends sweetness, and it kept longer in their carafes.

      Then in March, we replaced the Nicaraguan with a Fair Trade Organic Ethiopian that was a close mimic to the Nicaraguan. I don’t believe that later change was what you recognized as making the coffee brew weaker.
      I think that our local well water is the cause. In the summer when our wells are low, there are more solids in solution. Coffee is a colloidal suspension, so when there are less spaces between the water molecules, there is less room for the coffee to go into suspension.

      My suggestion: try some bottled spring water when you brew next, or come in to our lab and we can experiment together.

      Let me know what you find, and thanks for sticking with us. That’s loyalty that any business would appreciate.

      – Paul Katzeff

      Reply

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    Sandra

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    Should I store my coffee, either beans or ground, in the refrigerator, the freezer or the pantry shelf?

    Reply

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      Paul

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      Hi Sandra, thanks for asking!

      Store beans in the fridge, in a CLOSED container. A mason jar works. Grind beans the night or day before using – this allows the trapped gasses to escape and you get a richer brew with more intensity of flavors.

      Reply

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    Wendy

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    Which roast has the least acidity level? What would you recommend for those of us that can only drink coffee with low acidity levels?

    Reply

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      Paul Katzeff

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      Wendy,

      I recommend medium roast coffees, but dark roasts work also. However, the acidity issue is not settled. what are the impacts of the other 800 chemical compounds on the digestive track? The darker the roast, the lower the acidity.

      Also, try a cold brew coffee for lower acidity levels: https://store.thanksgivingcoffee.com/cold-brew-kit-p279.aspx

      Reply

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    rita

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    Do organic coffees contain endosulfates?

    Reply

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      Jacob Long

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      Hi Rita, the National Organic Program does not allow for certification of coffees grown using application of endo sulfates.

      Reply

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    Barb Albanese

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    Hi! I’m trying to find a caffeine content chart for all of the Thanksgiving coffees and wonder if you could direct me to that information. I’m unable to locate it on the website or online. Many thanks for your delicious coffees and sense of purpose!

    Reply

    • Avatar

      Paul Katzeff

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      All regular coffees have a caffeine content of 1.25 — 1.3%
      – Dark roasts have about 10% less then light roasts
      All decaf coffees contain around .03% caffeine.
      Our Pony Express (Robusta) has a caffeine content of 2.5 — 3.5%

      These figures are within 10% correct as agricultural products vary from season to season and place to place.

      Reply

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    Linda Just

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    Do you have any coffees that are shade grown? I’m concerned about the destruction of the rain forests, which is typical with coffee production, as most coffee is grown in the sun. Destroying the forests decreases habitat for our songbirds.

    Reply

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      Paul Katzeff

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      Hi Linda,

      Thank you for doing your research and caring about our earth. We absolutely do have shade-grown coffee. As a matter of fact, organic coffee must be grown in the shade, in order to be Certified Organic – so any coffee you see with the Organic label is shade-grown.

      If you’re looking to take it a step further and support migratory birds with your cup of coffee, our Songbird Coffee (benefiting the American Birding Association) is Certified Bird-Friendly by the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center.

      https://store.thanksgivingcoffee.com/american-birding-association-c39.aspx

      Reply

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    Kara B

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    Hello!
    I am a student at SUNY-ESF and I am currently taking a plant propagation class, for our term project we had to choose a plant to propagate and I chose to do a coffee plant from seed! I need to get in touch with a few propagators and I found you guys! So I was wondering if you could give me the run down of how you guys grow coffee plants? If it is another way other than from seed could you also describe that? Thank you for your time, this would be a big help!!

    Kara

    Reply

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    Denise

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    Hello!
    I am trying to learn how to grow coffee plants! Your info has been most helpful! Thanks a lot! I have a question tho . I transplanted my plants and now the are having yellow leaves and they have a few brown spots on them( the ones that are turning yellow).What do I need to do to help them out??

    Reply

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      Paul Katzeff

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      Denise,

      You need to add nutrients (food) to your soil. They need nitrogen. You can use Miracle Grow Rose food.

      Reply

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    Susan h

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    Your dark roast blend mentions flavored like caramel. Do you use non-bean ingredients in the roasting process or add other flavoring after?

    Reply

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      Paul Katzeff

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      Thanks for your question, Susan.

      No, we depend on the coffees natural flavors. Great coffees are subtle. In Paul’s Blend there is a hint of blueberry. In our French Roast, molasses. Great wines and not so great wines describe their flavors also. “Notes of black currant or suggestions of grapefruit.” Do they add flavorings? No.

      Reply

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    Kayla

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    Hi! I’m just wondering about how much caffeine is in the Pony Express blend? It says 3% caffeine but I’m curious as to how that translates to mg per cup. Thank you!

    Reply

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      Paul Katzeff

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      Kayla,

      It is 3% by weight. You can do the math. It depends on cup size, brew ratio of H20 to coffee, water temperature and ground fineness. Water hardness too.

      Reply

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    Rae

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    I bought the Santa Rosa Organic blend at G & G Market in Petaluma and absolutely love it! I recently moved out of the area wasn’t able to stock up on it before moving to to Boise, Id. Do you offer coffee at any local stores? Can I purchase the Santa Rosa blend online? Thank you 🙂

    Reply

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    Shelley

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    Can you tell me which coffees are the least acidic please?

    Reply

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    Barry losow

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    If I roast a batch and let it degas for 12 hours. Can I reroast to darker ? What happens chemically and taste wise?

    Reply

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      Jacob Long

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      During the roasting process, starches are converted to sugars which become volatile after first crack. If you re-roast you will degrade the sugars that have been coaxed out and end up with a cup that tastes bland and lifeless.

      Reply

  • Avatar

    Kristi Kaneshi

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    Any plans on expanding your market to the Pacific Northwest? I tried using the store locator but couldn’t find anything close, was wanting for try a few different varieties, is there a sample type pack online or does everything come in 12oz. Thanks :))

    Reply

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      Jen at Thanksgiving Coffee

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      Hi Kristi, I’m so glad you reached out!

      We are always looking to expand into new territories, and we’d love your feedback–do you have a specific market near you that you’d like to see Thanksgiving Coffee at? We’ll give them a call and see if we can get that fixed for you.

      As for sample packs, that’s something that will be coming in the near near future, but we unfortunately don’t have any at this time. Stay tuned!

      If you’re looking to taste some of the best that Thanksgiving Coffee has to offer, give our Roaster of the Year Bundle a try! You save a couple bucks from buying the three coffees separate, and you get free shipping when you hit $50.

      https://store.thanksgivingcoffee.com/roaster-of-the-year-bundle-p361.aspx

      Cheers!

      Reply

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    Stephen Prevost

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    A friend & I sample different coffees with higher caffeine content. The copy on your Pony Express talks about Uganda Robusta but never states whether PE is a blend or pure Robusta? (Also) Do you prefer African-sourced Robusta to the more common Asian sources?

    Reply

    • Avatar

      Jacob Long

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      Hi Stephen,

      Our Pony Express is 100% Robusta. We typically source our Robustas from Indonesia (Java) and Africa (Uganda).

      Reply

  • Avatar

    Eric

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    Two questions:
    1. I tend to like coffee with a lot of cream and sugar (or a shot of Irish Cream), but I want to cut back. Which type of coffee would naturally appeal to someone with this kind of palate? (Yeah, I know that’s heresy, but what can I say?)
    2. I’ve read that coffee’s health benefits (from polyphenols and chlorogenic acid) are best maintained by slower roasting at lower temperatures (in contrast to typical commercial brands, where processing speed and economy are prioritized). Is this a consideration in your roasting methods, and which of your coffees would you steer me towards since this is a priority for me?

    Reply

  • Avatar

    Bert

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    Since losing our beloved G&G Market in Santa Rosa we are desperate to replace our favorite Thanksgiving coffee. It was the House Blend which I think was previously the Equus Blend. It appears to be a medium/dark blend with large size, oily beans. Smooth, toasty, hint of chocolate and no bitterness.
    Can you suggest a replacement?

    Reply

  • Avatar

    Nate

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    Do any of your non-espresso specific beans lend themselves well to brewing as espresso? My local Erewhon market carries many of your varietals but does not carry the espresso blends so I am trying to find which of your normal coffees would work best for espresso. I generally enjoy light/medium beans with fruity notes.

    Reply

    • Avatar

      Jacob Long

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      Hi Nate! Not knowing exactly which coffees that your particular Erewhon Market carries makes this a little tricky, but let us see if we can help you! My recommendations would be:
      Paul’s Blend – Fruity and chocolatey.
      Mocha Java – Fruity and herbal.
      Sumatra Medium – Rich, with herbal notes. Lot’s of crema.
      Nicaragua Jinotega – Chocolatey with hints of apricot.
      Ethiopia Natural – Very fruity.

      Hope that helps – feel free to reply here with any other questions!

      Reply

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