We Roast In Tiny Batches:

A Very Brief Introduction To Coffee Roasting.

Why does Old City Coffee taste so great? The short answer is, because we roast in-house. All of our coffee beans are roasted at our Reading Terminal Market location in Philadelphia. It’s fresh and 100% arabica. That makes a huge impact on flavor.

Our gas-fired German roaster’s design dates back to 1912, and has massive cast iron plates on the front and rear of the roasting drum which ensure even roasting. It’s capacity is 10-26 lbs, just a drop of water in the ocean of commercial, larger coffee roasting operations. This small-scale roasting allows more control of the roasting process, and increases freshness because only enough coffee is roasted to meet daily demands.

Each batch of coffee takes about 15 minutes to roast in the roaster, which has an output of 96.000 BTUs (about the output of a home furnace). The temperature and length of roast is adjusted for each coffee variety and degree of roast; after the desired level of roasting is complete, the coffee is allowed to spill out onto the cooling tray, where the roasting process is stopped by “quenching” the coffee with air that is sucked through the cooling tray.

Over the years, we have refined the process responsible for that bold, flavorful brew in your cup. To us, roasting coffee is an art that we are passionate about sharing with our customers. Stop by our Main Roasting Booth in the Reading Terminal and see coffee roasting in action.