Not every cup of coffee is the same.

The taste of the beans depends on where they were grown and under what conditions, including the amount of sunlight and rain. But flavor also comes from roasting.

Earl Roemer, of Scott City, has traveled to Ethiopia for years with his flour mill business, Nu-Life Market. After meeting many coffee farmers and tasting their product, he decided to import Ethiopian coffee beans and start a new label. In late November, he launched Tiru Coffee, using beans from Ethiopia and having them roasted in Wichita.

For two years, Roemer studied Ethiopian coffee culture, plants, harvesting and processing methods. He also researched coffee roasters in Kansas, knowing he wanted to keep the roasting process in-state, and landed on Reverie Roasters in Wichita.

“We choose to work with Reverie because of their expertise with specialty coffee, their reputation in the Wichita community and their commitment to an exceptional product,” Roemer said. “I’ve been impressed with their attention to detail and their ability to work with us as we launched our new brand.”

Tiru means "delicious" in Amharic, the traditional language of Ethiopia. The beans Tiru uses for its five coffees are hand-selected from heirloom plants. The farmers dry the beans in the sun, an ancient harvesting practice. These single-sourced beans from the Harrar, Sidamo and Yirgacheffe regions of Ethiopia are also naturally processed and then sent to Kansas.

Tiru doesn't flavor its coffee. During roasting, the natural flavor of the bean comes out.

“You’ll have tasting notes similar to wine,” said Jason Hendry, wholesale general manager for Reverie Roasters in Wichita. “It actually reminds the person of what it is when they’re tasting.”

Tiru’s Harrar coffee comes from the Ethiopian highlands and, according to Roemer, brings the flavors of spice, blueberry, chocolate and jasmine to the palate. Their Yirgacheffe coffee, Roemer said, has a tangerine, wine and blueberry flavor.

It is exciting to see the different coffees they have, said Oscar Pineda, the director of coffee at Reverie.

“We’re really happy with the flavors of their coffee,” Pineda said. “They have Mihiru, which is rare.”

When roasting the beans, Pineda is always watching the roaster, taking samples out to smell and look at. He listens for the first pop — he calls this the crack.

“It’s like a big explosion. That’s when the bean starts to expand and release gasses,” Pineda said. “It’s when you start to develop the flavor.”

Hendry said national chains take it to the second crack.

“We feel when you get to that point you’re starting to get more stringent and smoky flavors,” Hendry said. “We want to leave moisture inside the beans. We strongly feel once you get to the second crack you’re taking away from the natural flavors.”

The raw beans are green. While in the roaster, they turn to a yellow and then the familiar medium brown color. While roasting, many other local roasters pay meticulous attention to their beans.

Dozens of coffee shops and bakeries across Kansas rely upon Kansas coffee roasters.

Bluebird Books & Café in Hutchinson offers Bluebird Brew 2.0, which is blended especially for the store and roasted in Wichita by Local Roasters. Patrick Dugan’s Coffee House in Garden City uses PT’s Coffee Roasting Co. in Topeka to roast some of their beans. PT’s also supplies Aimee’s Coffeehouse and Henry’s Coffee Shop in Lawrence, Mojo’s Coffee Bar in Newton and others.

Nationwide, according to the National Coffee Association, as of four years ago, consumers spent more than $74 billion for coffee.

Making sure coffee is well balanced is the trademark for small coffee roasters like Reverie, PT’s, Local Roasters and other Kansas coffee roasting companies. Each batch is roasted on specialty roasting equipment and watched attentively. This is one reason why local coffee shops across the state want to stay local. Another reason is to keep the jobs and money in Kansas.

“We get the freshest quality beans in the shortest period of time,” said Melanie Green, of Bluebird Books & Café. “It’s important for us and our business model to keep it local. It’s the domino effect. If my sales decrease because people are shopping online, I’m not able to purchase as much as I can locally."