The new Gene Cafe is a fluid bed roaster that uses a combination of hot air and heat reflection to roast. There is a heat reflecting panel that sits under the drum that helps maintain the heat level for the roast. Rather that using hot air to circulate the beans like most fluid bed roasters it relies on off-axis rotation to circulate the beans for roasting. This all results in a much quieter fluid bed roaster. http://tacticaltutor.com/best-folding-saw/.
The Gene Cafe is a large capacity roaster (for home a roaster), and has a max. capacity of 250 grams (8.8 oz). The manual states a max capacity of 300 grams for wet processed coffee and 250 for dry processed coffee, but we’ve found that roasting 250 grams for all coffees produced a more even roast and better results.
A big advantage of this roaster is the ability to change temperature and roasting time at any point during the roast using the temperature and time dials. This gives you the ability to create roast curves manually and gives you unlimited control over your roast. Like all of the other roasters we carry it also has a manual cool button that you can use to start the cooling process when you feel the roast is ready.
This is an excellent roaster for darker roasts and when used at the max. temperature (482 F) the roast moves from first crack to second crack before you know it. But the manual controls allow you to start at a higher temp. and drop your temperature at any point in the roast if your aiming for a lighter roast.
The only drawback that we’ve found with the Gene Cafe is that it takes some self training to be able to hear the second crack during the roast. The off-axis rotation has the beans moving from one end of the roaster to the other and hitting a metal seperator inside the drum, so it takes a few roasts before you can differentiate the beans hitting the interior of the drum from the second crack.
This roaster does take some time to get used to using, but if you’re looking for a larger capacity home roaster, want to save a few hundred dollars compared to other similar capacity roasters, would like complete manual control over your roast profiles, and you prefer the taste of fluid bed roasts over drum roasts, this would be a good choice.