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Designer Appliances - Kitchen Electric Housewares
April 2004
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For true coffee enthusiasts, Swissmar International Corp. (Richmond Hill, Ontario, Canada) exhibited its Alpenröst residential coffee bean roaster at HomeTech. According to Bruno Oehy, Swissmar account executive, the popularity of home roasting is growing as consumers continue to desire fresh coffee on demand. "Once roasted, coffee loses 40-percent of its flavor and aroma within 1 week," he explains. "Using our rotary drum technique, the roaster produces fresh-tasting coffee beans, similar to that of professional-grade roasters."

The home roaster is based on the company's patented rotary drum process. After the beans are inserted into the roasting chamber, the machine's heating element heats the beans to approximately 440°F. When roasting is complete, the beans go through a cooling cycle.

The drum then counter-rotates and disperses the beans. "It is similar to when a cement machine dispenses cement," Mr. Oehy explains. The entire process takes 20-25 min, he adds, depending on the roast setting.

The appliance has a capacity of 8 oz (225 g) and uses a multi-directional ventilation port that can direct smoke out of the machine and into a user's ventilation hood or out a window. Additionally, the patented "Flow-Thru" air ventilation is said to keep the appliance cool throughout the roasting process. An electronic control panel allows users to choose from 15 different roast settings, ranging from light to dark. According to Mr. Oehy, users can also manually control the roasting process. "You can introduce the cooling process at anytime by pressing the 'Cooling' button," he says.

"After the button is pushed, the door opens, and the fan blows air into the drum and cools the system. This is good for true coffee enthusiasts and also allows the user to change the initial setting." The roasters are currently available to markets worldwide.



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