An interesting conversation with Francis Bratz-Lersch, one of the roasters and owner of We Roast Coffee in Berlin.
Francis shares with us his opinion about Kenyan coffees, specialty coffee and what he likes about Wertkaffee.
How did you get to coffee? What are you doing in the coffee value chain?
First, I started my coffee career ten years ago in a coffee shop, and I loved coffee instantly. And I focused on the knowledge about coffee and how to get a coffee business. And what can I do for the specialty coffee scene? I’m a roaster at We Roast Coffee Berlin. I’m also the owner of We Roast Coffee Berlin. It’s a place where different brands are roasting their coffee, for example Ken the other guy is roasting there, and also I tried to establish specialty coffee with my own brand like the same name like the co-roasting space. And I tried to connect roasters. I try to connect baristas or interested persons who want to share knowledge and the community can have an exchange between the whole value chain, especially on the part of the value chain in Berlin and from green bean importers to the baristas, so the part between and yeah.
What roaster are you currently roasting on?
A five kilo Probat like this in Berlin.
How many coffees are you roasting?
Right now we have a range or a sortiment of around 12 coffees. Two of them are blended for especially the mainstream taste like nutty, chocolaty and for the B2B customers, and we have six high specialty coffees from the score, 84 to 88 points. But two of them are from Kenya.
What were your expectations of Kenyan coffee?
I had no expectations because I was not really into Kenyan coffee before, so I was very surprised. Kenyan coffees are so sweet and fruitiness are so balanced between the sweetness and the acidity. So the acidity is very smooth. Not very acrid, so more sweet berries and this kind of aroma. I really like that.
You work together with Wertkaffee as a partner, how did you get to know them?
To be honest, I can’t recognize because it was in the beginning of my business, and it was like I had so much to do. It just comes to me through Instagram, I don’t know. I liked the page, I liked something. I guess maybe I saw it on transparency coffee, the pledge, I don’t know, but could be.
From the Kenyan coffees that you are roasting, what do you like so much about them?
So two parts or two topics: On the one hand I like the flavors, the aroma and on the other hand I like the project behind it, from Wertkaffee. I heard about the project from Crossroads, and it was like a good combination to sell specialty coffee because I in my opinion specialty coffee should be not only a good taste or a good flavor, it should be also sustainable. This wasn’t common, so I said, that’s it. I guess that’s the one, it’s a good project. I look for coffee from Africa and I took the Kenyan because I was into it. And right now I have the Kiriga AB from Kiriga estate. I guess so. And the AB Kiptebes.