I know coffee is roasted differently, much lighter, than coffee roasted for drinking. But can you cup coffee that is roasted for drinking? Lets say I have 10 coffees or 10 roasts that I want to taste and I don't want to brew 10 cups of coffee. It would be much faster to cup them. So what would you suggest I do because the beans are roaster darker for drinking compared to beans roasted for cupping?
The simple answer is yes.
This really comes down to what the goal of your "cupping" is. There are standardized protocols and best practices for cupping coffee which include certain parameters for roast profile, time off roast, etc. These standards are all created for cupping as the primary tool to taste and evaluate green coffee as objectively as possible. Many production roasts will not meet the SCA's roast standards for cupping, and often times production roasts taste best 3-10 days after roasting.
If your goal is to taste your own roasts rather than evaluate green coffee, then your cupping becomes something else. Cupping 10 roasts like this can be extremely beneficial and educational to hone in on subtle differences in your roasting profiles. I do think it is important to note that many roasts on the cupping table often translate much differently when brewed with typical filter brewers. The best tasting roast on the cupping table may not translate into the best tasting roast in a auto-drip brewer or V60. I would encourage tasting your favorite roasts from the cupping table in brewers that will actually be used by the end customer to determine which profile you prefer to use as your reference.
In short, I encourage you to cup your roasts and confirm the results with a brewer that your end customer will likely be using.
If you have any follow up questions, just let me know!
Ok, that makes sense. Thank you!