Those who brew coffee at home are always in search of that perfect cup – the one pour of tantalizing Joe that their taste buds have memorialized. Lucas Oehlerking and his wife Jenna Jantsch feel your pain. They know you’re striving for coffee greatness, but life keeps intervening. That’s why they launched Routine Roasters last month.
“Routine is about fitting coffee into your everyday life,” says Oehlerking. “We’re about making good coffee available and we understand that there’s a time and place when you make your best cup of coffee, it just may not happen all that often.”
The micro-roasting company, which also counts Jenna’s sister Ellen and Nick Beattie (who are based in Brooklyn, New York) among its partners, is currently selling drip coffee, 10 oz. bags ($14 to $16) and single-serving bags ($3) – a coffee-packed filter that hangs on the sides of a coffee cup and can be used to brew a 6 oz. cup of coffee — at the Brookside Farmers Market. The couple also introduced a new wrinkle last week, working on a coffee ice cream collaboration with Erika Massow of H&C Ice Cream (which debuted at last year’s market).
All of Routine’s coffee is organic and they currently feature three different roasts. Paddle is Ethiopian with peach and sweet orange hints. The Adventure is made with Indonesian coffee and is “raspberry right when you open up the bag.” The Moose Routine, so named for the family’s chocolate lab and his insistence on a daily morning walk, has cocoa and caramel notes.
“I don’t go terribly dark. I prefer lighter roasts because I’m trying to bring out the natural flavors from the coffee,” Oehlerking says.
Oehlerking, a solar energy consultant, and Jantsch, a marketing manager, have dabbled in the coffee business before. They had a nano-roasting business when they lived in Berkley, California. And now, like then, they’re treating this coffee venture as way to dabble in the maker community.
“We’ve all got real jobs and we’ve got a little boy [11-month old Finnley]. We’re taking it in stride,” Oehlerking says.
When they decided to get back into the world of roasting, they opted for a drum roaster rather than the oven, which smoked out their California apartment kitchen.
“We roast really small batches. A lot of work goes into every one, but that way I can monitor the batch consistency and humidity,” Oehlerking says.
In the coming months, they’re looking at partnering with a roaster in the metro area to increase their production. And Oehlerking wants to begin experimenting with blends – something that might change with the seasons, but could give people a “consistent cup of coffee every day.”
In addition to the Brookside Farmers Market, their coffee is available at Season + Square (6205 Oak Street) and online.
“We’re tying to get coffee to people that like good coffee. It’s not about making the perfect cup,” Oehlerking says.[Cup and Single Serve Bag Image via Ellen Jantsch]