Science Pub Portland: Coffee!

Aug 21, 2018 | 7-9PM



Fire-Bending: Coffee Roasting and its Effect on the Bean

With Rob Hoos, Director of Coffee at Nossa Familia Coffee

August 21, 2018 | 7-9PM; Doors Open @ 5PM 


The flames roaring, the ever-changing smells, the rhythmic sounds of the movement of the beans within the metal dragon. Inside, coffee beans are losing water content, amino acids are catalyzing reactions with monosaccharides, oligosaccharides are undergoing caramelization, organic acids are breaking down while others are forming from the breakdown of these carbohydrates while developing pressures that can exceed 300 psi. At the end of the day, 300 volatile aromatics are transformed into over 1000. This craft, so often pictured in the artisanal idyllic is blending of science, art, and craft: bending fire to transform raw coffee into roasted beans.


In this session, Rob Hoos will introduce us to the world of coffee roasting, as well as dive into some of the science that underpins and guides the profession of a coffee roaster. Looking at the process from start to finish, we will come to understand the basic design, chemistry, and thermodynamics of the process as well as dive into current research on the manipulation of flavor development during coffee roasting.


Rob Hoos is the Director of Coffee for Nossa Familia Coffee. He has a diverse range of experience within the specialty coffee industry, including barista and roaster training, roasting, and green coffee purchasing. He holds the highest level certificates from the Roasters Guild of America and served on its Executive Council (2016-2017). He also works as a subject matter expert, content developer, and instructor for the Specialty Coffee Association (SCA). He is a Certified Trainer for Loring Smart Roast, and is well versed on most manufacturers of coffee roasting equipment. Rob travels around the world instructing on roasting methodology and technology. In March 2015, he published a book on coffee roasting, Modulating the Flavor Profile of Coffee - One Roaster's Manifesto, which has sold nearly 7,000 copies worldwide. Rob manages the entire coffee program at Nossa Familia Coffee, developing relationships with farmers and importers, ensuring quality control, and managing roast profiles. Rob hails from a small town in Ohio, and in addition to coffee (it was a hobby before it was a job), he also enjoys whiskey, beer, wine, food, and travel, and most of all spending time with his wife and two daughters. Find me on Instagram and Twitter @robhoos.


OMSI Science Pub at the Empirical Theater is a ticketed event. To guarantee a seat at this event, please buy tickets online or at the OMSI front desk. Advanced tickets will be available for purchase until 11:59pm the day prior to the event. Please show your ticket at the theater entrance upon arrival.


If the event sells out, we will update the website and Facebook listings accordingly. If the event does not sell out in advance, attendance will be first-come, first-served at the door and at-the-door admission will remain a suggested donation.


There will no longer be official seat reservations available at the door. You are welcome to reserve a seat with your jacket or sweater.

Science Pub OMSI is a monthly event that is open to anyone and everyone – no scientific background required. Just bring your curiosity, sense of humor, and appetite for food, drinks and knowledge! For more information or to sign up for our mailing list, email:


The Empirical Cafe will be open with sandwiches and snacks. Both locations have alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks. Food and drink are welcome in the theater. Parking is free for the event. Doors open at 5pm. Please note: OMSI's restaurant, Theory will not be open.


For more information or to sign up for our mailing list, email: