Roast magazine, which covers the specialty coffee industry, has named Coffee By Design in Portland its 2020 Roaster of the Year.

Left to right: Coffee By Design founders and owners Mary Allen Lindemann and Alan Spear, director of coffee Jeremy Behne and head roaster Travis Spear. Photo courtesy of Tim Greenway

The popular Maine coffee company, which has three locations in Portland (including the roastery and coffee house on Diamond Street) and one in Freeport, won in the macro roaster category. Companies in that category roast more than 100,000 pounds of coffee annually. Coffee By Design produces 650,000 pounds a year.

Mostra Coffee in San Diego won in the micro roaster category, which consists of companies that roast fewer than 100,000 pounds of coffee per year.

Coffee companies apply for the award with written nominations and coffee samples. Coffee By Design submitted its 1994 blend, the Costa Rica Tarrazu La Minita “Lilo” Anaerobic Fully Washed and the Burundi Kayanza Kibingo Washing Station Natural.

The winners are chosen by Roast magazine and members of the coffee industry. In a statement announcing the awards, the magazine said that Coffee By Design is “growing their business with a focus on sustainable practices, quality standards, and social responsibility. The company has put a focus on sharing their knowledge and excitement about coffee, creating living-wage jobs with ample growth potential and training opportunities for its employees.”

Alan Spear and Mary Allen Lindemann founded Coffee By Design in 1994. The company’s roastery is run by Spear, director of coffee Jeremy Behne and head roaster Travis Spear.


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