This casual, local café caters to the locals in a big way: to both patrons and employees. It’s located in a large, long building alongside the town railroad tracks at the dead-end of a street.

Tortured Snoopy: a symbol of downtown Santa Rosa Sasa Samiac roaster inside A'Roma Roasters

Out front there is limited sidewalk seating — and an abused Snoopy sculpture, customary for Santa Rosa (aka Charles “Schutlzberg”). Inside they have a back room that serves just ice cream, but the main space is an old, wooden coffeehouse centered around a Sasa Samiac roaster and coffee beans in various stages of roasting: from the plastic bins of greens to the old, brass bins against the wall for storing retail roasted coffee.

They do meticulously date-stamp their roasts here like meat at the supermarket, which is an encouraging sign. Their roasts may lack the gratuitous adjectives and GPS coordinates common to roasters of serious coffee — who decidedly charge quite a bit more than their $12.50/pound. But the roasts here are as fresh as they come — same day, even. We purchased some for home use, and it’s been gassing out for days now.

Entrance to A'Roma Roasters Inside A'Roma Roasters

La Vittoria machine at A'Roma Roasters The A'Roma Roasters espresso

Their espresso shots, however, leave a bit to be desired. Using a three-group Grimac La Vittoria at the front bar, they pull larger shots with a thinner, medium brown crema that dissipates quickly. There isn’t much body to the shot, and there isn’t much flavor either beyond the basic bold filter coffee taste of spice and some pepper. Served in classic brown ACF cups.

We wanted to like this place a lot more, but they are typical of the older North Bay coffeehouse/roasters. We’re certainly bigger fans of the Santa Rosa installment of “The Goat” just down the railroad tracks.

Read the review of A’Roma Roasters in Santa Rosa, CA.