A general Italian roast can be described as: Somewhat spicy; complexity is traded for heavier body/mouth-feel, aromas and flavours of roast become clearly evident. This is what should be in the cup when drinking a blend that is roasted to the Italian roast stage. These stages in roasted coffee come with a particular colour. Below I will give you a hint what is coffee roasting:
When roasting coffee, we start with the green beans and heat them up to the right temperature to have a good balance between the flavours of the beans and the characteristics of the roasting process. This goes from a very light roast (= low temperature) to a dark roast (=high temperature) until we end up with an almost burned bean, if you go any further you will have the ingredient for cafe del fuego. Kids, grab your marshmallows!. All this is done in a coffee roaster. Here you see the Probatino from Probat. (Thanks to the Coffee Collective Blog) This coffee roaster works with a drum where the beans circulate and are heated to the right temperature. (And when this temperature is reached they are immediately cooled in a tray in front of the drum.)
This end temperature gives some different grades of roasted coffee; from the left: unroasted (or “green”), light, cinnamon, medium, high, city, full city, Italian, and French.
A very good overview of the different roasting grades can be found on the Sweet Maria’s website, here you find an overview of the different stages of roasting with the different colours that go with it.
But most important enjoy what is in the cup..