Coffee Roasters in Castleford
Eat.Drink.Wakefield | 08.02.2021
Starbucks, Costa, Caffe Nero, Costa, Pret, Starbucks, Costa, Costa. Another Starbucks. Another Costa.
The presence of so many coffee shops on our high street and retail parks is a sign of just how mainstream coffee culture has become.
Wakefield and Castleford are swamped with coffee shops. Thankfully there are plenty of local independents rubbing shoulders with larger chains, but have you ever stopped to think about exactly when – and where – your coffee was roasted?
Coffee Roasters Wakefield
Until recently the search term ‘coffee roasters wakefield’ would prove fruitless, with roasters in Leeds and Huddersfield dominating the results.
Ordering a couple of bags of their ground coffee to try one Sunday evening, I was amazed to find them drop through the door the next morning, just as my last bag of coffee was running out. Lifesaver!
The coffee itself was superb. It was smartly packaged, too, with the date of roasting clearly marked and a tasting card telling you exactly where your coffee has come from.
As you might have gathered from the name, Recent Beans’ coffee is all about freshness – recently roasted coffee just tastes better.
We spoke to Barry from Recent Beans to find out a bit more about what makes their offering so unique.
Tell us a bit about how Recent Beans started
Recent beans is very much a passion project.
I worked for a large pub company for 20 years, running pubs in various parts of the country. When I was offered voluntary redundancy after the pandemic hit, I decided it was now or never for doing something I truly loved, roasting coffee.
I put together a business plan, bought a 5kg Toper roaster from Turkey and started putting the gamble together!
What made you set up at Queens MIll in Castleford?
Your USP is quality and freshness - why is fresh coffee so much better?
It’s a very simple USP.
I’ve roasted coffee at home for many years, the difference between a stale, over roasted and mass marketed coffee and a speciality AA grade coffee that’s just been roasted is like the difference between a can of supermarket saver lager and a freshly tapped, hand pulled real ale. You can’t compare.
Coffee really should be treated as a fresh product, just because it’s safe to drink a year after roasting doesn’t make it any good- If you’ve had a fresh coffee, you’ll know what I mean!
Tell us a bit more about where your coffee comes from and how you source it.
What's the difference between coffee from an independent roaster like Recent Beans and mass produced coffee from the supermarket?
I ordered your coffee one evening and it arrived the next morning! How do you do that?!
We roast 7 days a week, if you order before 2pm we will roast and pack it the same day. If you’re in Castleford we try to deliver it that evening! We want the first cup the next morning to be a true experience of coffee from a roaster.
There aren't many coffee roasters in the Wakefield/Castleford area - why do you think that is?
There’s some terrific roasters around and about, although I believe we are the only commercial ones in Castleford. I’m sure there will be more in the near future as the trend grows for having great coffee at home. It’s a difficult industry that the big multinationals easily dominate.
Leeds is home to some stand out coffee rock stars in the roaster world though and we’re really just hopping on some coat tails!
How does the Wakefield/Castleford coffee scene compare to bigger cities like Leeds and Sheffield?
Coffee culture has boomed in recent years - what do you put that down to?
Consumers are now using great equipment at home and really enjoying a lighter roast, premium coffee. You don’t need to spend thousands to enjoy great coffee though, a V60, drip filter or cafetière all work wonderfully! My best advice for starting a coffee journey? Don’t always go with a dark roast.
How can independent roasters and coffee shops compete with big chains?
What's next for Recent Beans?
Survival hopefully! We’ve been blown away by the support locally.
We’ve made some amazing connections and absorbed advice like a sponge.
Hopefully the next few years will be about us getting our name out there as a quality roaster with a great reputation. We want the brand to be associated with the best coffee shops in Yorkshire. We want to really be able to say we partnered with the top baristas and helped in every way we could to develop the local coffee scene.
Where can we buy your coffee?
Queens Mill, Aire Street, Castleford, WF10 1JL