Five Awesome Coffee Roasters in Santa Rosa

I come from an Italian family and grew up with a 100% Italian grandfather who always had a cup of coffee in his hand. It didn't matter what time of day it was—5:30am or well after dinner at 9 o'clock at night—coffee coursed through his veins through and through. As he grew older, I remember at some point he had to switch to decaffeinated coffee, but that didn't do anything to stop his continuous intake of this glorious beverage.

I bring this up because I, too, am just like my grandfather. I love a good cup of coffee and drink it as often as I can. Though admittedly, I drink decaf in the afternoons for fear of being wakeful all night. Nonetheless, my body craves this delicious beverage and as a result, I am an avid coffee shop visitor. Even when on vacation, I seek out the best coffee shops in town and make a point of revisiting if I ever return.

In Northern California, it's easy to be a coffee snob, because the coffee here is just that good. We have so many local roasters that really producer top-notch beans. In Santa Rosa alone, I have a hard time deciding which coffee shop I want to go to sometimes, because the local roasters all compete at the same level. And then, expanding the boundary to neighboring cities, the options just become endless.

In no particular order, because trust me, they are all that good, here is a list of five awesome coffee roasters in Santa Rosa. If you are a coffee fiend like me, you don't want to miss the chance to taste the many delectable roasts.

Flying Goat Coffee | 10 4th Street, Santa Rosa
I've been a fan of Flying Goat since I first needed a pick-me-up on the way home from a wine tasting and discovered that Flying Goat gets the job done well! Their coffee is very, very strong, and sometimes that is exactly what you need. A little pricier than most (their 12 ounce bags are $15 for a blend, $18 for single origin), there's no denying the quality level. The blends are just as tasty as the single origins, of which they have quite a few, but if it's a really honed in flavor you are looking for, the single origins surely will not disappoint. I enjoy their Ecuadorian single origin called Las Tolas; it's a light, sort of fruity-flavored roast that goes well with a bit of cream and sugar. (They've also got a second location in Healdsburg!)

Bella Rosa Coffee Company | 5491 Skylane Blvd #140, Santa Rosa
You have to be dedicated to the local lifestyle to discover Bella Rosa. This is a family operation with a small café in town and they also sell their beans at the local farmers' market, held at the Santa Rosa Veterans Building on Wednesday and Saturday mornings. What I love about Bella Rosa is that their coffee quality is superb, but the prices aren't as high as some of the others on this list. You can buy a 10 ounce can for $10 and then take it back to the farmers' market and have it refilled for $8 and a free cup of fresh-dripped coffee to go with it! Their Morning Star blend is my favorite—a medium roast with gentle spice and creamy vanilla bean notes.

A'Roma Roasters Coffee & Tea | 95 5th Street, Santa Rosa
The number of roasts available at A'Roma is seriously impressive. Their wall of coffee, which makes me smile every time I see it, seems limitless. Located in the Historic Railroad Square of Santa Rosa, the location is great and it makes for a perfect pit-stop on a lazy weekend morning or a busy afternoon while running errands downtown. What's more is that they are open late, really late, until 11pm on weeknights and midnight on weekends… making this a great late-night hangout spot if you prefer coffee shops over bars. It's hard to recommend a roast here, because there are just too many and even in the four years I've lived in Santa Rosa, I haven't tasted them all. But I can say that I have liked everything I have tried, and it's a great place to expand your palate and taste as many different roasts as you can manage.

Acre Coffee | 2365 Midway Dr, Santa Rosa (in Montgomery Village Shopping Center)
If you caught my Santa Rosa brunch article, you're familiar with my obsession with Acre Coffee. They just get it right here—every pour, every time. I love everything they make from the lattes to the single drip cups and their ridiculously addicting cold brew on tap. Acre is a Nor Cal staple, with their most recent location being Santa Rosa, but they've also got a shop in Petaluma and a couple locations in San Francisco. (Don't even get me started on San Francisco coffee roasters—that's another whole article! One tip though: Blue Bottle Coffee.) At Acre, I usually order whatever they have freshly brewed; you just can't go wrong with any of their roasts. And if it's a hot day, I go straight for the cold brew on tap. This a cold, creamy, strong cup of coffee can make any sluggish day perk right up.

Taylor Maid Farms | 6790 McKinley Street, #170, Sebastopol (in The Barlow)
Okay, I have to cheat a little and throw Taylor Maid Farms on this list, even though they are located in Sebastopol. But their coffee is amazing and I can't do a coffee roaster article without mentioning them! Actually, Taylor Maid Farms was the first locally roasted coffee that I fell in love with when I moved to Santa Rosa. What I like about Taylor Maid Farms is that some of the local bakeries in Santa Rosa exclusively use their coffee. Just around the corner from where I used to live, Molly's Bakery in Bennett Valley was right on my way to work and often provided me with that first sacred cup of coffee when I was really craving Taylor Maid. Their Goat Rock Roast is my absolute favorite; the roast level is medium-dark and it always hits the spot with its dark, nutty flavors and smooth texture. I like it with a splash of cream and a pinch of sugar.

More articles from this author