• Joffreys Facebook
  • Joffreys Twitter
  • Joffreys Instagram
  • Joffreys Pinterest
  • Joffreys Google Plus
We never forget that coffee is an agricultural product. How the beans are grown is just as important as how they are roasted and brewed. Lackluster beans make lackluster coffee. So our process has changed little since 1984. It all begins with sourcing the very best 100% Specialty Grade Arabica Beans on the planet to ensure the best possible experience with every cup of Joffrey’s.
Our Head Roastmaster, Chris de Mezzo, has been roasting coffee for more than a quarter of a century. Each year, he travels the globe searching coffee plantations and family farms for the finest crop offerings available. He treks through fields and hillsides to assess the growing conditions, the health of the coffee trees, and the harvesting methods used by the farmers.
We approve each coffee selected for import, and whenever possible, follows the cherries from the time they are harvested through the cleaning, drying, and hulling process to evaluate the quality of the final green coffee beans. As per Joffrey’s policy, We select only the best 100% Specialty Grade Arabica Beans.
“Specialty Grade” refers to beans that are uniform and all virtually defect free. Their moisture content ranges between 9 and 13 percent, the importance being that drier beans don’t provide as much flavor. Of all the coffee in the world, 75% is Arabica, but only 5 to 10% of those Arabica beans meet the exacting standards it requires to be called Specialty Grade.
Of the more than 20 different defects that can affect coffee beans—ranging from being faded to partially cracked to damage by insects or disease—Specialty Grade strictly limits the amount of defects allowed. But even these qualifications aren’t enough. We want beans that display distinctive qualities for our coffees, so we focus on coffees that present the best taste, acidity, body and aroma.
Quality control doesn’t end with bean selection. Incoming beans are carefully inspected to make sure no damage occurred during the journey to Tampa. Once our roasters verify the beans are as pristine as they were in the field, they roast and ‘cup’ a sample to ensure consistent quality and flavor.
Defined by the Specialty Coffee Association of America, "Cupping is a professional technique for evaluating coffee’s fragrance, aroma, taste, body, and after taste." One hundred and fifty milliliters of hot water is poured over roasted and ground coffee and allowed to steep. Then, using a large spoon, the coffee is stirred, sniffed, allowed to settle then vigorously sipped at various temperatures to expose its flavor characteristics.
After cupping and confirming the beans’ perfection, it’s time to roast. We do it the same way we’ve always done it: roasted to order in small batches, each tended to personally by our head roastmaster or one of his roastmaster apprentices.
Like all facets of the roastmaster’s craft, roasting is an art. Our roasters perfect their art with the help of the coffee beans themselves, continually adjusting roasts and blends to make the most of each and every bean. They can also be spotted “listening” to the beans as only the best coffee roasters know the beans have much to say if you know how to listen.
Joffrey’s respects and appreciates the history and tradition of the coffee process. But even true masters like us leave little to chance. That’s why we use an Agtron Spectrophotometer to measure each roasted batch’s reflectance under infrared light. Think of it as a unique fingerprint that guarantees each batch consistently produces the perfect cup. Still, there is no replacement for the experience of a skilled palate, which is why our one of our skilled roasters always makes the final call.
In the beginning, we knew we loved great coffee and tea, but very little about creating it. So we traveled, sipped and listened. We think we’re pretty good now—though our fans will tell you Joffrey’s is the best they’ve ever tasted—but we know we have more to learn. “Nobody knows everything,” Chris says. “We all learn something new every day.” So we’ll continue to explore, experiment and eagerly await the new origin countries and flavors still to be discovered.