It’s been widely repeated that no matter how long you heat up your roaster, the first batch will always be a bit off, underdeveloped, not meeting the standards. This claim dates back to the times, when color meters were rather exotic tools for most of the coffee roasters.
It’s true that your first batch can behave a bit differently, but it is really a minor issue if your preheating protocol is designed correctly. If you don’t have enough energy in the beginning (compared to your preferred reference), just catch up during the first half of the roast by adding more burner power. The color is a priority here. If you hit your demanded value and kept up with the profile, you probably won’t distinguish the cup from the others in a blind cupping.
Our Roasting Tips are brought to you by Piotr Jeżewski (88 Graines Q Grader & Sourcing Director)