Cornerstone Coffee Roasters x Hacea Roaster Spotlight

Cornerstone Coffee Roasters

Roasted Bag Name 

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    1. Tasting Notes


Hacea brings the hard work of the producers and roasters to the front. We started this monthly spotlight to bring attention to some incredible work by our roasting partners.

In 2019, Joshua Castleberry opened Castle Coffee in Albuquerque, New Mexico.  The small cafe started with the goal of being servant minded, coffee inspired, and community focused.  When COVID struck in 2020, Joshua took the opportunity to start trying his hand at roasting.  Joshua's roasting journey started with using a Fresh Roast.  His roasting journey progressed to working with an Alio Bullet and then upgraded to a 15kg Toper in 2022. 

Today, Castle Coffee has two cafes plus a roastery training space in Albuquerque.  The roasting program operates under the brand "Cornerstone Coffee Roasters."  While still enjoying the challenge of roasting a variety of coffee origins, Josh keeps the line up for Cornerstone diverse, with a mix of funky experimental coffee and approachable washed coffees.  His goal is to provide each customer with a wide range of coffee experiences each time they step foot in the cafes.  

When Josh started learning about roasting, he began by roasting washed samples from as many origins as he could get his hands on.  Through trial and error (and a lot of cupping), Josh began developing baseline roast profiles for a multitude of origins.  Once he had developed a baseline roast profile for washed coffees of different origins, he took the same approach to various varietals, elevations, and processing methods.  He said one of the most difficult coffees he ever worked with was an anaerobic natural coffee from Nicaragua.  The coffee hit first crack very early, then the rate of rise crashed.  Even with high amounts of gas and longer development time, Joshua struggled at hitting his target end temperatures.  This particular coffee had been a rare occasion where Josh made a purchase without sampling.  Though an incredibly frustrating coffee, it taught Josh a valuable lesson on the importance of sampling (and sample roasting) all of his coffee purchases.  

One of the most recent coffees to hit the shelves at Cornerstone Coffee Roasters has been the Colombia Ciudad Bolivar Finca La Luisa Juan Pablo, a carbonic macerated natural caturra coffee sourced through Hacea Coffee Source.  Because of the natural processing method on this coffee, Josh approached it with slower initial heat application and targeted his post first crack development around 1 minute.  With this roast approach, he found the coffee to be missing some of the acidity that he was hoping to bring out.  The next approach he went more aggressive with the heat application into first crack and increased the ending temp by 3 degrees.  This faster approach through Maillard phase popped the acidity in the coffee, while the slightly extended development increased the sweetness.

When Josh Castleberry isn't in front of a roaster, or hanging out with customers at his cafes, you will likely find him on a basketball court.  Prior to his coffee career, Josh enjoyed being a part of the coaching team for the University of New Mexico women's basketball team.  It was actually during his time traveling with the team across the country that Josh discovered specialty coffee in the towns he visited.  

You can find Cornerstone Coffee Roasters coffee available online through the Castle Coffee website. Or, if you are ever in New Mexico, be sure to stop by one of the Castle Coffee cafes to grab a pour over.