Coffee Roasters in Buenos Aires

Marcello Rotella

Marcelo Rotella

Marcelo Rotella is coffee professional hie journey in the coffee sector is marked by a commitment to mastering brewing techniques while simultaneously indulging his artistic inclinations through the medium of film.

Independent coffee roasters are like the heroes of the coffee world.

Breaking into the coffee industry, especially in regions like South America, can prove daunting.

Established coffee conglomerates hold decades-long monopolies in many countries, making it a challenging landscape to navigate.

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In this article, I will talk a little bit about what indie coffee roasters are, what they do- and then, I’ll present you with my very own ultimate list of the best independent coffee roasters in Buenos Aires, capital of Argentina, perhaps the most important coffee stop in South America after Colombia. 

What exactly do indie coffee roasters do?

Well, the main and most obvious thing- they roast coffee. The roast is without a doubt the most important part of a coffee’s flavor: not even James Hofman would be able to salvage a bad roast. Half of a good barista’s job is securing coffee that has been roasted properly. 

Because big companies move tons (literally) of coffee a day, their roasts are carried out by specialized machines. Roasters, then, only really press a few buttons and call it a day. 

Indie roasters, on the other hand, have a lot more room to play with. Many have custom-built roasters, and are able to get flavors out of coffee beans that would be impossible otherwise.

Fuego Coffee Roasters Buenos Aires

However, they also participate in the coffee world by sourcing coffee beans themselves, in most cases forming human, personal connections with coffee farmers.

It is this microeconomy that has allowed certain types of coffee flourish that wouldn’t have been able to keep cultivating coffee if it weren’t for independent roasters. 

Another not so small contribution of indie roasters is the way they educate coffee drinkers on “best practices”. This would be, for example, the best way to store coffee beans: while big companies sell their products in supermarkets and therefore must package their product accordingly, indie roasters are much more mindful of their final product. 

They usually sell their coffee in bags equipped with an oxygen valve, which allows CO2 to leave the bag while preventing oxygen from getting in. I constantly get asked from customers why that little hole is there, and I love explaining to them why that’s the best way to preserve coffee. It’s not much, but it’s honest work.

Independent coffee roasters in Buenos Aires 

Where I’m from, Argentina, coffee doesn’t particularly reign supreme.

Yerba mate has seniority over coffee- it is an ancient, pre-colonial source of caffeine that is favored over coffee in most of the country.

You will see people drinking it at the office. In public transport. Walking down the street, juggling a mate in one hand and a thermos full of hot water in the other. 

I might lose my Argentine privileges for this, but… mate is more of an acquired taste. It’s very, very bitter and no amount of sugar (or milk, as some do) makes it better. 

Fortunately, Buenos Aires was one of the first cities in South America to import espresso machines. Our coffee boom happened well before it did in any other country in the region (looking at you, Brazil!) and the city has a coffee shop in virtually every block.

Our baristas are good, and so is our coffee. And so, there is a big independent coffee roaster movement, some of them offering some of the best coffees I have ever tasted- and I’ve tried a lot of coffee! 

So, without further ado, this is my ultimate list of independent coffee roasters in Argentina:

1. Puerto Blest

Every time I want to treat myself to good coffee, real good coffee, I go with Puerto Blest.

They’ve got a great selection of rather obscure coffee beans, and their roasts are out of this world.

You can just never go wrong with any of their coffees. 

Puerto Blest Coffee Roasters
One of Puerto Blest’s magicians working their magic

2. Bell Coffee

Bell Coffee has a great reputation in the country for sourcing their beans in the most ethical way possible.

All their stuff is pesticide-free, sun-dried, and just about as natural as it can be- and it shows.

Their coffee has this really unique flavor that I’m sure is thanks to their efforts to keep their coffee as “green” as possible.

Bell Coffee Roasters
Bell Coffee showing off their latest Catuai batch on their social media

3. Fuego Coffee Roasters

Fuego Coffee Roasters are a smaller, newer group of coffee roasters.

I have been following since their early days- they’re still a very small operation, yet they manage to offer extremely high-quality coffee.

If you’re ever in the area, don’t miss out on this. Truly an artisanal coffee experience.

Their coffee has this really unique flavor that I’m sure is thanks to their efforts to keep their coffee as “green” as possible.

Fuego Coffee Roasters
The guys at Fuego Roasters are always busy roasting coffee!

4. Rito Coffee Roasters

In contrast, Rito is a relatively big operation, and yet they stay true to their roots.

They have state-of-the-art equipment for roasting, and it shows.

This is the kind of coffee you would expect to drink at a fancy restaurant in Italy- right here in Buenos Aires. 

Rito Coffee Roasters

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