The 10 Best Coffee Roasters in Vancouver 2020
It’s day two of the 2020 Snobby Awards. Yesterday saw me announce The Best NEW Coffee Shop of 2020 and today sees me announce the 10 best coffee roasters in Vancouver 2020.
Be honest, how many times do you actually ponder about the people that roast your coffee?
It’s easy to think about how delicious your drink is or how great the ambiance of the cafe is. You hopefully got a great experience from the barista and maybe even dropped them a nice tip. But the hard workers in the back rooms, slaving over burning hot roasters often get forgotten about.
Well, today is their day!
Today we get to celebrate the hard workers with burned noses. The legends that are exceptionally gifted at deadlifting large sacks of green coffee. The teams that are way too familiar with how earplugs work.
This is our time to thank The 10 Best Coffee Roasters in Vancouver 2020!
The 10 Best Coffee Roasters in Vancouver 2020 list is bought to you by Roaster Central
Roaster Central is an online marketplace for local craft-roasted coffee. You can choose from over 50 different types of beans, from 25 (and counting) brands, then have them shipped to your front door. We’re talking about amazing businesses, too! Pallet, Agro, Detour, Harken, House of Funk, and loads more.
This ain’t a basic selection of coffee. This is the real deal, high-end stuff!
If you’re interested in checking them out you can head to their online store here, or keep an eye out for links by the individual roasters throughout this list.
10. C Market Coffee
111-100 Schoolhouse St, Coquitlam
On Siply – Yes!
Their roaster is petite but their coffee program is anything but!
C Market Coffee has a broad selection of beans and roast profiles, with a sway towards the darker end of things.
All of their coffee is curated and QA’d by their in house Q Grader, one of the highest accolades you can get in the coffee industry!
Vancouver Coffee Snob Recommendation: They have a very solid Ethiopian bean that works very well as filter coffee as well as an excellent decaf roast on espresso. I usually stick to pour-over.
9. Rocanini Coffee Roasters
127 W 5th Ave, Vancouver
On Siply – Yes!
No fanfare, no advertising and no pretentiousness. Rocanini is a model example of a roaster that just gets their head down and produces incredible coffee day in and day out.
Their roasting team often put on tasting events, when we’re not all hiding indoors from COVID.
Vancouver Coffee Snob Recommendation: Anything from Africa! Their Ethiopian and Kenyans have been a particular delight when brewed on pour-over.
8. Timbertrain Coffee Roasters
551 McLean Dr, Vancouver
On Siply – Yes!
If you’ve not heard of Timbertrain already I’ll be very surprised, as they’re a very well respected brand across the city.
But in case not, you can expect impeccably high-quality roasts and two amazing venues to drink them in.
Vancouver Coffee Snob Recommendation: My usual tactic for Timbertrain is to go into their roastery, try whatever is on batch brew, immediately fall in love with it and buy that in bean form!
7. Luna Coffee Roasters
Light and bright is what you can expect from all of the coffee from Luna!
They’ve carved a well-respected name for themselves in the coffee roasting world and for good reason. Their coffee is always impressively tasty, well balanced and impeccably presented.
Vancouver Coffee Snob Recommendation: This year I was a huge fan of their Hazelnut Cookie roast. If you can find a bag of it, grab it quick, as it appears to be pretty hard to locate at the time of writing!
6. Modus Coffee Roasters
112 W Broadway, Vancouver
On Siply – Yes!
Modus must be classified as a Vancouver classic by now, right?
They roast their coffee into specific profiles that they’ve assigned in house names to. So for example, when you drink their Dom roast, you can expect a well balanced, light-medium coffee, with simpler flavours than something funky and fruity such as their Latif roast.
They have a bean for every palate, and damn they’re all delicious.
Vancouver Coffee Snob Recommendation: This year’s Opus roast was a smooth, creamy and floral masterpiece.
5. Agro Coffee Roasters
Agro sadly closed their tasting room this year, but their roasting program is still going strong!
They create a wide range of coffee, from light to dark. In fact, their dark roast is one of the few that I’ve tried where I could actually pick out the tasting notes. This is a surprisingly difficult thing to do when getting towards the toastier end of things.
Vancouver Coffee Snob Recommendation: I always favour their Roasters Choice line. It’s always bright, fruity and delicious, especially when it’s from Africa.
Click here to buy Agro coffee on the Roaster Central website
4. House of Funk Roasting Co
350 Esplanade E, North Vancouver
On Siply – Yes!
Mark my words – we’re going to see some HUGE things come from House of Funk in 2021. They are constantly pushing boundaries with how they source and roast coffee.
The most exciting thing they’ve started to do recently is barrel age their coffee. This is where green coffee is added to Whiskey/Wine barrels to pick up some of the flavours before it’s roasted.
Fun fact – Ann, their head roaster, has Synesthesia. This means that the colours of their packaging match the colours she sees when drinking the coffee for the first time!
Vancouver Coffee Snob Recommendation: If you get the chance to try any of their barrel-aged coffee, you’re in for a mind-bending experience. But the less adventurous of you should stick to their impeccable Colombian or their solid espresso.
Click here to buy House of Funk coffee on the Roaster Central website
3. Harken Coffee
338 Powell St, Vancouver
They’ve only been open for a few months, but Harken has been making enormous waves with their roasting program led by veteran head roaster, Stacey Lynden.
Their selection is varied, but most of it is on the lighter end of things, with bright fruit flavours and tea-like florals. Their coffee also has some of the sexiest packaging I’ve seen in ages.
Vancouver Coffee Snob Recommendation: I’m a huge fan of their Spring and Summer roasts for filter coffee. That being said, one of the sweetest and juiciest espressos I’ve made this year was using their winter roast.
Click here to buy Harken coffee on the Roaster Central website
Interlude from The 10 Best New Coffee Shops in Vancouver 2020!
The 10 Best New Coffee Shops in Vancouver 2020 will continue after this quick ad break!
For the last year, I’ve been working on a project called Siply. You might have noticed that throughout this article I reference whether a shop is part of the Siply network or not.
Siply is an app that gives you a curated list of the best coffee shops in Vancouver. Then it gives you amazing deals on drinks.
Simply put – you can’t get better prices on your drinks anywhere else than this app. I made a little calculator to show this. Have a play with it and see what you think:
If you’re keen to take it out for a whirl, you can download it by visiting the website here.
OK, back to the list of The 10 Best Coffee Roasters in Vancouver 2020!
2. Prototype Coffee
883 E Hastings St, Vancouver
On Siply – Yes!
Prototype is the number one place I’d recommend you take your snobbiest of coffee friends when you’re in town. Why? Because they usually have around fifteen different coffees on bar!
They roast all their beans in the dinky little Bullet R1 roasters you see in the photo above. What this means is that they don’t have to worry about roasting huge amounts at any one time.
Their coffee selection is so varied that quite simply you’ll always find something you like. From a basic easy drinker to a weird and funky Geisha.
Vancouver Coffee Snob Recommendation: While I will always try their high-end fancy shit (Geishas etc) I find that I’m always impressed by anything they roast that’s from Ethiopia. It’s always bright, juicy and has huge body.
1. Pallet Coffee Roasters
395 Alexander St, Vancouver
On Siply – Yes!
To finish off our list of the 10 best coffee roasters in Vancouver 2020 we have the one and only Pallet Coffee Roasters!
Pallet roast a colossal variation of coffee, from bright and fruity Geishas to solid daily drinkers, to one of the best Espresso blends I think exists (Top Shelf).
Their coffee game got even bigger this year, with the inaugural run of their new large-capacity roaster (pictured). I say new, I think it’s from the 1930’s, but you get what I mean.
Vancouver Coffee Snob Recommendation: Anything light! Their Panama Geisha was truly spectacular this year, but for something a little easier to find, I always lean towards their Kayon Mountain Ethiopian or their Top Shelf espresso. This year I’ve also been really impressed by how fruity, juicy and full-bodied their Decaf Sidamo was.
Click here to buy Pallet coffee on the Roaster Central website
Check this blog at the same time tomorrow for the big one: The list of 10 Best Coffee Shops in Vancouver.
There are some serious changes to the top 10 this year!
To view the list of the 10 Best NEW Shops of 2020 click here and the 10 Best Coffee Shops click here.