Using aromatic milestones, you can roast without any logging software or theoretically even without a thermometer (although I don’t advise it) as they mark certain progress in the coffee roasting process. You can identify them all the way until the first crack. As the name suggests, this approach uses your sense of smell to identify stages in the roast, fragrances reminding you of freshly cut grass, hay and baking bread. And then there is that A-point, the very short moment just before the first crack. This is the first time the coffee reveals its true aromatic potential. Willem Boot developed these milestones to help his students understand the progress of the roast.
The temperatures when these aromatic milestones happen are only indicators. Each coffee is different, according to its processing method, cell density moisture content and other attributes. Also, do not forget that bean temperature is only an approximation and depends where the probe is placed in the roaster. Roasters also don’t apply heat in the same way, so the aromatic milestones will occur at different temperatures.
How about you? Do you use these or other aromatic milestones? Would you be able to create the roast you want only using aromatic milestones and a timer? Let us know in the comments below.