About Smokey Barn
Purveyors Of Fine, Fresh Roasted Coffee.
Hello! Welcome to Smokey Barn, my name is Chris and I am the owner and master roaster here within our unique coffee company.
How it started
People often ask how I first got into coffee, to find the answer we need to rewind back to 1993, when my parents opened a ‘Proper coffee shop’. It was quite a big deal at the time, the first cafe in our region to have a “Cappuccino Machine”. At 12 years old, I was too young to serve coffee, but when the shop was closed I would go along the bar smelling all the different coffees. I do remember being totally in owe of the many different coffees that were available to customers. The level of detail back then was nowhere near what we know speciality coffee to be today. Back then all we knew was ‘Colombian, Dark Roast’. This is where my coffee journey began.
After dabbling in various engineering careers throughout my teens and twenties, I realised that what a really wanted to do was run my own business. I was still hugely into coffee but had never considered it to be possible as a career. I grew evermore curious about the speciality coffee scene and noticed a distinct lack of quality coffees available in our region. So, in 2011, I chucked in the desk job and 'Smokey Barn Coffee Roasters' was born. The only problem was I had no where to roast, I couldn't afford to rent a commercial property, so the only option was to convert the barn in the garden into my new roastery!
At the end of 2013, Smokey Barn moved out of the shed and into our new home at 165 King Street, Norwich. Here you can drop in for coffee consultation, barista training, or just generally to hang out and talk about coffee! But please call first to book an appointment.
Why the name?
This came about after installing our first roaster into place. I was so keen to get going, I fired it up, simply ignoring the fact that we hadn’t actually attached any sort of flue system and consequently “the barn” (shed in the back garden) was soon bellowing smoke with smoke. Eureka!, 'Smokey Barn' was born.
What we’re about and how are we different
Our vision for Smokey Barn is a leading wholesale and retail supplier of speciality coffee in the UK and our region of East Anglia. We're not salesmen, we don't have targets, nor do we sell warranties or flog old stock. Smokey Barn was born from a purists hobby of high end quality coffee. We take huge care and pride in our roasts. Providing our customers with the best possible quality of coffee and service is always our number one priority.
The products we offer
At any given time, you may find a great selection of freshly roasted coffee beans in stock. There will be a range of easy going, mellow coffees along side some crazy, rare and unique offerings. Each coffee comes with tasting notes, detailed information and a video presentation by myself, so that you can be as informed as possible when you buy your coffee beans online.
Fair Trade coffee
We don't get involved much with Fair Trade coffee. We only source speciality grade gourmet coffee of the highest quality, which typically commands a significantly higher premium above the Fairtrade coffee price, thus negating the requirement for charity. Remember, just because a coffee is 'Fair Trade', doesn’t mean it tastes good!
Smokey Barn's first espresso blend named 'Purple Ribbon' was nominated amongst the top 5 espresso blends in the UK from micro roasters, by Caffeine Magazine. This is an achievement I was quite proud of. We were set against some really strong competition and this was all still while operating from a garden shed!
Brewed / Filter coffee
Brewed coffee is back in fashion once again with many new forms of cheap, easy to use brewing equipment (siphon, chemex and filter drippers), now there is no excuse for not making great coffee at home.
Fresh Roasted coffee
We individually craft roast our speciality coffees to highlight their best properties, i.e. sweetness, body and acidity. We do this five days a week, which means we are able to provide a genuine fresh roasted coffee experience. Though for coffee to taste it's best, you should allow your coffee beans to rest for at least a week after roasting. Preferably, two weeks post roast for peak flavour. After four weeks the quality will begin to fade.
Arabica coffee at Home
For best results, take care when storing your fresh roasted coffee at home. Keep it away from any strong odours in your kitchen, such as food. Coffee will absorb moisture and will deteriorate when stored in a damp environment. You can store coffee in the fridge ONLY for as long as the bag remains unopened. For long term storage, the freezer is good. You don't need to allow the coffee to thaw, but only grind what you need. Close and seal the bag as quickly as possible to reduce oxygen and moisture getting to the good stuff.
Thanks again for choosing Smokey Barn Coffee Roasters.