“Responsibly harvested, divinely roasted,” are two things the owners of Black Powder Roasting Co. in Mooresville look forward to bringing residents and businesses in the area who try their coffee. As one of a relative handful of coffee roasting businesses in North Carolina, Black Powder uses that four-word phrase as its motto – geared to educate people about responsibly harvested coffee beans, and creating a unique taste through the roasting process. Located at 256 Raceway Drive in the Lakeside Business Park since March, husband and wife owners Dave and Melissa Stahlman have turned their love for coffee into an entrepreneur’s dream, from where they sell coffee to area grocery stores, markets and coffee houses. The Stahlmans have lived in Mooresville for 14 years, but said they had trouble finding a good quality cup of coffee here. And after starting their business in their home almost 2 1/2 years ago, Dave said they were finally able to find the right place where they could expand, joining a relatively small fraternity of North Carolina coffee roasting companies. “It took us a while to find the right place, since we needed something with a loading dock and a big enough space for roasting,” he said. “There was definitely a void in this area for this kind of market. Our goal is to educate people about coffee and change people’s mindset’s about it and let them know that high quality coffee is available.” The 1,826 square-foot space includes 650 square-feet of store front and office space, with the rest attributing for its temperature controlled warehouse where the coffee beans are stored. “The best thing about having a small business like this is being able to pick my own (coffee) beans,” said Dave. “We picked 15 single origin beans, fair-trade, or rain forest-certified beans for our company out of the 80 that we tried and had the highest cupping score.” Using Specialty Coffee Association of America standards for processing and cupping samples, Dave noted its company’s beans have a cupping score of 85 which was calculated using a flavor profile evaluation form to score a coffee’s fragrance/aroma, flavor, aftertaste, acidity, mouth-feel, and balance. At this scoring level, Dave said they have been able to create a high quality, with low bitterness, great tasting coffee. “Eighty-five or higher is the magic number,” he said. “We want to teach people that not all coffee is equal.” Through the harvesting process, Dave works with importers with a focus on certified, environmentally agriculture and fair trade labor use to find super-hard beans grown in high elevations where cold nights help crops mature slowly for a more intense flavor profile. Those beans account for less than 5 percent of the coffee grown worldwide. The Stahlmans also purchase beans which support social needs within the source countries, such as Indonesia, Ethiopia, Sumatra, Nicaragua and Panama. “This is great because we...Read More
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