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Krister Kaattari

Hotel Mestari’s coffee is designed by the roastmaster Krister Kaattari who knows how to create a full-bodied taste experience

Krister Kaattari roaster and quality assurance manager at Robert Paulig Roastery has been working with coffee for 20 years. Roasting and tasting are the central part of the job, but passion and experience are also needed for a perfect recipe. Kaattari has designed Hotel Mestari’s coffee, which is a balanced combination of richness and smoothness.

Kaattari has worked for a long time around different flavors: in bars and the kitchen. A 20-year career at Paulig has deepened Kaattari’s knowledge of different flavors and, above all, taught him the secrets of coffee making. At Paulig, Kaattari started as a coffee trainer, after which he worked at a coffee laboratory where he roasted coffee samples. 

“When I first started roasting small samples, I only had my nose, eyes, ears, and mouth. We can talk about up to 10 000 roasts, which is probably how I learned the secret of roasting. It’s important to know how to find certain roasting profiles in coffees. You can only learn this by tasting coffee and following an experienced taster. I got important know-how from Maria Tour, the Head of Cupping,” Kaattari recalls.

At present, Kaattari is in charge of Robert Paulig Roastery’s roasting, creating the roasting profiles for their coffees and ensuring quality. Kaattari explains that making coffee is largely about roasting and tasting. These steps are repeated until the coffee’s perfect roasting profile is found. 

“In roasting, it’s all about the little things. It follows certain steps where chemical reactions happen but let’s not go into them now. Nowadays, computers help to display temperatures and record the steps of roasting. But they do not replace the importance of tasting,” Kaattari explains.

When the bean comes out of the machine, you can see that it is well roasted. However, Kaattari emphasizes that only tasting will tell you whether the correct roasting profile has been found. The knowledge of creating and maintaining a roasting profile is learned through experience, but a great passion also plays a part.

“For me, it’s not enough to throw the beans in the roasting drum. I always want to get the best flavors out of the coffee. And when I manage to find the perfect flavor, a smile rises on my lips, so to speak. That’s how you know when the roasting profile can be locked,” he smiles.

“I am only one part of this process.” 

Kaattari thinks it’s fascinating to be part of the multi-stage coffee-making process, which starts in the coffee bean growing regions and ends when someone tastes the coffee. He thinks sustainability is one of the most important parts of making coffee. Kaattari is proud that Paulig’s all coffees are third-party certified as responsible.

“I am only one part of this process. I roast the coffee and someone else drinks it. When the coffee leaves our factory I can’t affect how the process continues. But we can make sure that the beans we use are responsibly grown and roasted in a carbon-neutral factory,” Kaattari says. 

“Sustainability doesn’t affect the taste or roast directly but the more we invest in conditions in countries of origin, the more we get coffee with better quality”, he continues. 

“Coffee is always an experience.”

Kaattari believes no one drinks coffee just for the caffeine. Based on his knowledge, coffee drinkers seek experiences for different moments. Mestari’s coffee was also built on this vision. 

“The coffee I roasted for the Hotel Mestari is a deliciously well-balanced and rich blend to which Kenyan coffee beans bring a berry-like nuance. The coffee is designed to fit perfectly for the moments experienced in Mestari.”

The coffee has a suitable degree of roasting, which removes acidity, and this way it fits many coffee drinkers. The harmony of Mestari’s coffee is brought by the perfect mix of beans from Brazil, Kenya, Colombia, and Guatemala. Kaattari thinks mixing ingredients is the finest part of his profession. Still, the best part is when coffee manages to pamper the drinker. 

“It’s great when people come up to say “wow the coffee was good”. It’s something that makes me proud. The delicious taste of coffee is the thing I strive for. Coffee is always an experience. I want to create a part of that experience by roasting the coffee in a way that brings out the coffee’s good taste.”

Who is Krister Kaattari?

A roastmaster who takes his work seriously and starts his mornings with a light roast coffee.