GARDNERVILLE, NV - Ask Mark Berry to describe the look of these roasted coffee beans, and he couldn't tell you.
But the kind of coffee, the temperature in which it is roasted, or where it came from... no sweat.
“That's a medium roast Sumatra there have to really pay attention. About 354 we have to let it go to 438 degrees,” says Berry.
The owner of Blind Dog Coffee used to be a horse trainer.
Then he suddenly went blind about six years ago.
The then-50-year-old had to find something else to support a wife and five kids.
With the help of a family in Bishop, California he quickly learned the coffee biz---and has been roasting along ever since.
“I started in a small wooden shed. I cautiously say this but I think we are one of the largest what we call local roasters in Northern Nevada,” says Berry.
With the help 6 employees--some of whom are family--Berry has been able to get his coffee into grocery stores such as Raley's, Scolari's, Whole Foods and Costco.
With the help of machines that talk to him, he can gauge weight, color, temperature and time.
He says he works up to six days a week roasting and packing coffee.
Five-pound bags are sent to restaurants and coffee shops, the smaller bags to gift shops and grocery stores; eventually Marks says he'd like to turn his most popular coffee, Nevada Black, into stout.
While his story looks impressive, he says he'd rather people look for local products like his at local grocery stores and retailers.
If those products aren't on shelves, he says asked that they be stocked.