We track the coffee
continuously during its long journey.

From the plant to the coffee bar.

Coffee roasters since 1952

Our story

The Italian estro of Pietro Notti, made possible in 1952 the birth of a shop, right in the heart of the city of Alessandria (Piedmont, Italy). In fact understanding the development that coffee will have in the coffee bars in the period after the war, he started to study and to prepare special blend for espresso coffee. In the next decades from a small laboratory, the brand Saturno came up evolved in an Important roasting factory, but continuing at the same time the home made tradition with the same passion that makes the Saturno blend a beloved and appreciated product of the Piedmont and Italian customers.

During the years Saturno’s became specialized in the research for a quality to trade world wide. In 1999 the Roasting Saturno started a collaboration with the International Institute of Coffee Taster (IIAC – IICT), making the study of sensorial analysis the beginning of coffee production and the employers training formation, the focal point of the company policy.
In 2004 Saturno’s started a collaboration with the National Institute of Espresso Italiano (INEI), which approve two Saturno’s blend for top quality espresso italiano, a big prestige for the company.
From There on, started a period of great acknowledgments, like winning two gold medals at the International Coffee Tasting, and the victory, with the barista Filippo Mezzaro of the Espresso Italiano Champion 2014. By the way, the best achievement remain customers daily satisfaction, which continue to chose and taste Saturno’s blend, an espresso coffee of great Italian tradition.

The coffee production chain

Where and how coffee is cultivated


The coffee plant belongs to the botanical family of Rubiacee, has his origin in the African Continent forest. It is mainly divided in two species: Coffea Arabica better known like Arabica and Coffea Canephora, called Robusta.

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Absolutely necessary for the survival of the plant is a moist- warm, tropical climate.
The former is cultivated in the mountains at an altitude of 900 to 2000 mt and prefers a temperature of 15° to 24°C.
The Robusta grows in areas at an altitude of 200 to 600 mt and higher temperatures (24-29°C)
Temperatures close to zero degree are deadly for the plants. The Robusta is less vulnerable against disease unlike the Arabica. The original habitat of Arabica is the forest in the middle-east mountain of the African regions (Etiopia, Kenya). The Robusta’s stretches over the dock of the river Congo, until the upland of Uganda. Today we find coffee plantations in the following countries:


The plants need with nitrogen, potassium and humus fortified ground. They need to be exposed to the sun, but not excessively, rain have to be regular so that they can grow and thrive robust.

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There are only a few regions where we can find wild growing coffee crops: the rising demand has resulted to an intensive production of the plant.
These are three different types:
Commercial multiple cultivation: the coffee plants are cultivated in the shadow of other”‘commercial” plants (oranges, cloves, pepper, bananas).
Shadow monoculture plantations: the coffee plants are planted under one typology of plant, which offers them the right quantity of shadow. In this case we are talking about a specific, more technical plantation.
Full sun monoculture: here the amount of earning from the coffee plants is at most, but the exposition of the coffee directly at the weather conditions require fertilizer and great resistance of the plant to the sunlight.


As soon as the coffee cherries are ripe, we proceed to the harvest. It can be done in three ways: Handpicking, stripping or by mechanized harvest.

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Handpicking means riped cherries are harvested by hand one by one. This is the best way for the quality: A selection is made between riped, unriped and perished. The harvest will be more expensive, and it will take longer to process but the manual selection will allow an homogeneous harvest.

Stripping means that the plant’s branch it’s passed through the hand-picker’s fingers, picking up the cherries: obviously with this method the total absence of unriped and perished berries is not guaranteed (this selection will be made afterwards), but it is quicker and less expensive


To obtain the coffee bean need to work on the fruit first, and this happen with these three different methods: Natural, Washed, Descascado.

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NATURAL or TO DRY: The cherries are left to dry in the sun on clay ground beds, leaves or plastic sheets. This process last many days, until the cherries are completely dry. The remaining seeds will be cleaned and again selected.
WASHED COFFEE: Here happen the maceration of the berries, with the use of cleaning tanks: A first stage split the riped berries from the unriped and perished ones, the mature ones are brought in other tanks full of clean water where the process of final pulp-stripping will be carried outwith the aid of special machinery.
DESCASCADO: It’s a processing method developed in Brasil. The freshly harvested fruits are released in machinery with water, then separated: the selection happens through small water channels, the mature soft red grains are pulp-stripped, then go through the cleaning stage, then subsequently dried. This working method it’s been developed for the high rainfall areas. Through this almost exclusively mechanic process in fact, the beans require a drying period of just three days.

coffee production areas

coffee roasting


How it happens the roasting process?

We can simply assert that roasting green coffee means to warm it up to a temperature between 200°C and 230°C, and toasted for a period of time, paying attention that it is cooked evenly and not burned. The roasting time vary: depends on the coffee typology, by the roasting machine, and by the coffee culture. Let’s talking about roasting:
Blond: ideal for its light mono origin, for filtered coffee, with fruity and floral aromas.
Medium Blond or American: typical for arabica, very aromatic with medium-light body and good acidity. As well used for filtered coffee.
Medium: These beans come in dark nut brown color, and are typical from northern Italy.
– Full: The beans are dark brown color, loss of acidity, and an increase of body. Ideal for good standard espresso coffee.
– Dark: We come with a very dark brown color, full body and bitterness are dominant. The beans start showing oil spots. It’s widespread in southern Italy.
– Very Dark or French Roast: The beans are almost black, very oily, very strong smell of roasting. This method is often used in the American Espresso’s.


We are member of Inei
Istituto Nazionale Espresso Italiano

The institute was born in 1998 after a three years research, with the aim to define the quality that is expected by those who are ordering an espresso, and it’s been carried out by the Institute of International Coffee Taster and by the Study Center of Taster, together with the teachers of the universities of Udine and Torino.
With a thousand of tests with consumers and a dozen of laboratory tests we come to define which are the measurable objective characteristics sought after by the espresso drinker.
The aim of the Istituto Nazionale Espresso Italiano is to protect and to promote the Espresso, giving a point of reference for thousands of costumers.

The institute of which, Roasters, Coffee Machine and Coffee Grinders Makers, and other associations who give their attention to quality espresso coffee, take part, today counts 39 associate, putting together an earning of 700 millions of euro.
They operate in compliance with the rules laid down in the espresso coffee certification of the brand Espresso Italiano (product conformity certification of, Csqa n. 214 of 24th of September 1999, DTP 008 Ed. 1), which can be summarised in: using a qualified blend; use of qualified equipment ( coffee machines, coffee grinder), and the use of skilled staff.


The pleasure experience of our Italian aroma
after a long journey around the world

Contact us!

+39 (0131) 341351