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The Flat White & The Roaster

There are two competing accounts as to who coined the term '

- New Zealand or Australia? A flat white is composed of a double shot of espresso and a textured milk topping. It is stronger than a latte, but smoother than a cappuccino, and it is this middle ground that made it a popular beverage in Australia, New Zealand and, now, across the globe. Ian Bersten, founder of Sydney's Belaroma Coffee believes it's more likely that the drink originated in England sometime during the 1950's.

New Zealand has a population of only about 5 million, but despite this, it has long been known for its passion for coffee. Approximately 66 percent of the population regularly consumes coffee, and there is still a heated argument over whether the flat white originated in Australia or New Zealand decades ago.

New Zealanders continue to drink a lot of coffee. Espresso is still the industry norm (as it does in many consumer markets). The long black is a close second to the flat white as the most popular individual beverage. The business climate for smaller roasters is encouraging because of this mentality of patronising neighbourhood roasters and cafes. With cafes like ours at Brighton Beach House selecting beans and the best roast for our customers coffee experience. To ensure that our customers enjoy the best coffee in Christchurch.


In fact, New Zealand has more roasters per person than any other nation in the world.

As a result, a growing number of third wave roasters are starting up, and roasted coffee's quality and sustainability are beginning to rise. Small micro roasters, or businesses that care about selling tasty, high-quality coffee and improving relationships with farmers, are sprouting up all over the nation, with many great ones here in Christchurch like Prima and Crafted. These boutique roasters are found in little spots around Christchurch.

Coffee roasting is both an Art and a Science. Roasting coffee transforms the chemical and physical properties of green coffee beans into roasted coffee products. The Maillard reaction (MRx) is one of the most important reactions occurring during roasting. MRx involves the binding of an amino acid with a sugar, resulting in the formation of important flavor and colored compounds. It is non-enzymatic which means it requires an external energy source such as heat to start the reaction. The roast master has many factors to consider including the coffee beans' size, moisture content, quality (grade), and quantity of beans being roasted. The vast majority of coffee is roasted commercially on a large scale, but small-scale commercial roasting has grown significantly with the trend toward "single-origin" coffees. Some coffee drinkers even roast coffee at home as a hobby in order to both experiment with the flavor profile of the beans and ensure themselves of the freshest possible roast.


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