In 2007, I wrote an article about fresh-roasted coffee in Paris, which I published in my Paris Insights newsletter, as well as in my book, Paris Insights – An Anthology. Since then, I have visited several different brûleries in Paris. These are shops that roast their own coffee beans, either on the premises or at an off-site facility.
On one occasion I decided to try roasting the beans myself, drawing my inspiration from Steve Van Nattan’s Coffee Page on the Web. I went to the Brûlerie de Jourdain at 140, rue de Belleville in the 20th arrondissement and spoke with the owner, Gaston-Hugues Berthier, who sold me 250 grams of green Indian Malabar coffee beans. He advised me to roast only a handful at a time, and to keep moving the skillet. He gave me a handful of roasted beans, so that I could compare the color of my roast with his.
Mr. Berthier’s father founded this brûlerie sixty years ago. His huge coffee-roasting machine stands at the front of the shop. While we were discussing coffee, his sound system was playing some real cool jazz.