25 Nov 2019


When it comes to maximising your home coffee roasting experience, who better to ask for top tips than those who use it day in and day out?  We’ve rounded up some top tops and best-kept secrets from some of our customers, so that you can achieve the perfect roast for your coffee and get even more from your IKAWA!

1. So many coffees, and different ways to roast them, where do you start?!

– Scotty –

“One of the benefits of the IKAWA roaster is that it allows me to easily try multiple things.

My usual strategy is to order a bean that has a good review or from an origin that I typically find appealing. Once the beans are in, I’ll start with a similar roast recipe in the app and roast. I try to wait 2 days after roasting before tasting, and if something isn’t quite right, I’ll edit the roast and save it as a copy. When we have a roast recipe we like, we repeat-roast once a week on Saturday to make sure we have enough coffee for the upcoming week.”

2. Tailor the Flavour.

How to get those bright fruity notes popping: 

– Niels –

“Try to roast very light, and leave the beans to rest for 14 days at least. By light, I mean that the fresh roast still has hints of grass/peas (what is typically described as slightly under-developed). The result is typically a very sweet and juicy coffee with a complex acidity that cools beautifully – 

I believe the sweetness and fruity activity is best 2-3 weeks after roasting.” 

Try Niels’ roast recipe for Kenya AA here (and make sure to do it justice by allowing your roast to rest!)

This just shows how much customisation and personal preference you have – Three Time UK Cup Tasters Champion Freda Yuan wrote this article on rest time here!

But its not just about light roasts! 

– Deven –

 “You do not have to go light to have a distinctly flavorful (not roasty) cup.To find flavor where it pops out, and usually it is not extremely light or dark but somewhere just off the middle.  I try to create roast recipes to highlight a single flavour note to its extreme overpowering all other contexts of the coffee.”

You can read more about our take on exploring roasts; light, medium and dark here.

3. Minimise the faff and maximise those precious weekend hours 

While the weekend is the perfect time to unwind and slow down, there is still so much to do. So how can you make your roasting sessions fit into your day?

– Rosie – 

“I use my IKAWA on a Saturday morning to roast coffee for the weekend and the week ahead, so I  normally make about 5 batches or so. Each roast takes about 9-10 minutes from start to finish, including cooling. I’ve spent some time finding the roast recipes that I like, so that I don’t need to stand over the machine constantly. Instead, I use the roast time as a timer to finish my weekend tasks, or planning for the week ahead – for example, during the first roast I’ll make a coffee with a previous batch, then during the second roast I’ll write out my shopping list. Waiting for my roast to finish is the perfect time to plan my diary for the next week, or even book train tickets for my work commute! This way I’m effectively time-boxing my chores and really getting set up for the week ahead with both my life and my coffee!”

– Dinu –

“If you don’t have time to create a new roast profile, you’re in luck! The machine remembers the last profile that you used – all you need to do is press go and you’re set!” 

4. Press Go to stop: Get experimental with development time!

If you’re reading this and thinking, what in the world is development time?! Fear not, we’ve broken it down for you here.

– Alex –

“In a nutshell, it’s an important phase in the roasting process that has a big impact on the final flavours of the coffee. Even relatively small tweaks in time can have a significant impact. On an IKAWA when you hear the first crack, try stopping the roast after 45, 60, 75 and 90 seconds later, and see what flavours come about. 

Little known fact –  You can stop the roast and put the roaster into cooling mode at any point – even before the roast recipe reaches the end, by simply pressing the Go button when you’re ready.”

5. Any recommendations on beans?

The beauty of the IKAWA Home is that you have the freedom to experiment with any varietals, origins and flavour profiles. Our while our roast recipes are designed especially for each coffee, you can also mix and match IKAWA recommended roast recipes with various green coffees.  Some will be delicious, others may be less so, but it’s so simple to experiment and find your sweet-spot. 

Play around with beans from our World Selection Pack , and try others too! 

– Toby –

“My favourite non IKAWA sourced beans are now the Yemen blend from Windrose using a Wenago recipe, and Lake Kiva Congo coffee from Sensory Zero in Hong Kong, roasted using the Burundi recipe. Finally, I’ve been loving an El Salvador coffee using IKAWA’s Honduras recipe.” – Toby

Have you got any tips and tricks you’d like to share with other IKAWA users?

author-img By Rosie Annabelle Mills-Smith