Toby and his team select only the most distinctive high altitude arabica coffees from around the globe. The striking flavours and aromas of these beans are the products of the micro climates in which they grow — the frequency of rain, proportions of sun and shade, length of the ripening season and the qualities of the soil and water. These factors, collectively known as terroir, combine to produce beans that can stand on their own, without blending, needing only the love and expertise of careful roasting to realise their potential. Whether we are roasting for espresso, plunger or filter, our joy lies in finding each bean’s sweet spot, where aroma, body, sparkling acidity and terroir flavours are balanced. To borrow a phrase from the wine industry, where the bean lay is where the flavour lies.
Of course, part of the coffee master’s art is the challenge of blending coffees — combining beans so that their flavours complement one another without losing their individual terroir qualities. We might, for example, blend a Central American bean for its bright, snappy fullness with the velvet body and spice of a vintage Indian, and finish them off with an African for floral sweetness and berry top notes.
All Toby’s Estate coffees are roasted to order and packaged as soon as possible, to prevent any loss of their delicate flavours and aromatics, in non-permeable bags with degassing valves. After roasting, any time the beans spend exposed to air can lead to oxidation, or to the absorption of unwanted elements from the atmosphere. Our packages also feature roasted on/packed on dates so you know you’re using fresh product. From seed to cup, the coffee production chain is long and painstaking. At Toby’s Estate we feel a responsibility to the many careful hands who’ve brought the coffee this far, so we treat our beans with uncompromising respect.
The mission of Toby’s Estate Espresso School is to provide you with the skills and knowledge you need to complement the efforts of harvesters when finishing the journey into the cup. The Cup!