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Lets talk about COFFEE

Discussion in 'Social Life, Food & Drink, Travel' started by Flambeur, Dec 2, 2009.

  1. Axelman 17

    Axelman 17 Senior member

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    Recently came into a bunch of free time and decided to use it to explore some of NYC's coffee establishments that would be otherwise too inconvenient. Have now gone to the following: Brooklyn - Toby's Estate, Queens Kickshaw, Upright Coffee, Bedford Hill Coffee Bar, Manhattan - Stumptown, O Cafe, Third Rail, Jack's. I am not as into espresso as others here are, opted for either pour-over, americano or cold brew when I needed something iced.

    The place I kept going back to was Toby's Estate. For me, it delivered the full package - pour-over quality was high (tried Colombia and Brazil), extremely pleasant place to sit (good vibe, nicely decorated room, lots of space) and very friendly service. The other plus was that the granola parfait thing they do there is great. My favorite cold brew was Queens Kickshaw in Astoria though when I went there on a Tuesday morning, the place was nearly deserted, was borderline awkward. Enjoyed the americanos at Third Rail the most, I am not enough of a connoisseur to put my finger on why - flavors, ratio etc all seemed to work.
     
  2. Xericx

    Xericx Senior member

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  3. A Y

    A Y Senior member

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    Yes, it's the best! Frankly, I don't know why anyone would use anything else for a full immersion brew unless you don't like paper filters. Compared to any pourover method, it is the easiest, most consistent way to make filter coffee.

    Anyone else making iced coffee? With the weather warming up, I've been doing it more often now. I use the Japanese iced method, and basically dispense the CCD or Aeropress over ice. The total weight of the ice and water used for brewing should be equal to what you used before. For example, a CCD requires 360 g of water, so I do something like brewing with 190 g of hot water in the CCD (with 22 g coffee, making a concentrate), dispensed over 170 g of ice. Be sure to use brighter, more acidic coffees.

    The effect is remarkable because the immediate cooling traps all of the flavors and aromatics, which then get released when the coffee warms up in your mouth, so the flavors seem more concentrated.
     
  4. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    I have a clever. They are great, but honestly if you get the grind right a normal pourover is pretty much the same thing.

    Honestly, I like french press the best. I like the unfiltered mouthfeel.
     
    Last edited: May 29, 2012
  5. Joffrey

    Joffrey Senior member

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    Ran out of my last batch of coffee I had. Picked up a 1/4 pound of amaretto and ethiopian harrar coffee beans. Had them ground at the store. How do I know how fine or coarse to grind coffee when using a pour over coffee maker? I ended up having one ground more fine and the other more coarse to see what I end up liking.
     
  6. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    You really just have to tinker a bit to see what you like the best. It depends on your grinder too. I hope you are using a burr grinder.
     
  7. b1os

    b1os Senior member

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    If I buy, say, pre-ground Caffè New York (or equal), will it yield good results in a french press? In other words, is a coffee grinder vital?
     
  8. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    The first step to good coffee is fresh coffee. Garbage in, garbage out. A good grinder and good water are the most important steps.
     
  9. b1os

    b1os Senior member

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    I guess I'll pass then. Don't have the money to splurge 300$ on a pre-owned grinder atm.
     
  10. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    For french press you don't need to spend that much on a burr grinder. If you are making espresso it becomes much more important. But a baratza won't cost you that much.
     
  11. lefty

    lefty Senior member

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    What's the suggested gram amount for a 1 litre /32 oz press? I've been using 50 gms. Upped to 55 recently. 60 gms for the chemex 40oz.
    Hit and miss.

    lefty
     
  12. A Y

    A Y Senior member

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    People start with 60 g/L and alter from there (usually up). However, the standard 4-minute steep time from FP tends to underextract. People have steeped up to 10 minutes with good results. Of course, there are other dependent factors like grind size (finer -> more extraction), water temp (hotter -> more extraction), stirring (more -> more extraction), and 2nd order effects like heat leakage from the FP glass. Anyway, you'll have to play around to see what you like.


    Like Patrick says, you don't need a fancy burr grinder for French press. Bodum, and Capresso make decent burr grinders for under $100. Some people like the Kitchen Aid one too (notably Alton Brown). Baratza also has a new model that is $150, and cheaper if you get the refurbed version. If you don't mind working a little, Hario makes an excellent manual burr grinder that can even be used for espresso.

    But you must absolutely use the grounds within an hour of grinding. Pre-ground coffee from the store or cafe is like throwing money away.
     
  13. indesertum

    indesertum Senior member

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    get a manual burr grinder like hario. they're like $40
     
  14. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    The problem with the hario is that because it is manual the burrs wobble while you are turning the handle. This wobble is extrapolated as the burrs are separated further as in the case of French Press type grinds. I noticed a significant improvement in my French Press coffee when I got a refurbed Baratza virtuoso.

    I bumped into somebody at a cafe who claimed he found a modification online somewhere where you can "fix" the burr in place better so it doesn't wobble anymore. He said it was a fair amount of work. Not worth it, imo.
     
  15. A Y

    A Y Senior member

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    I've heard about the wobble, and if you aren't too violent in your grinding, you can minimize it.
     
  16. b1os

    b1os Senior member

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    Thanks guys. I'll think about whether I just get a cheap manual grinder or actually invest in a used good grinder and a used low-mid-end espresso machine. I can always sell the Nespresso machine without a loss.
     
  17. indesertum

    indesertum Senior member

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    you can buy modified harios online. i got mine from i think orphan espresso for about $50. they also sell the kits so you can upgrade them yourself. i took a look inside and it doesnt seem particularly hard if you have the parts.

    i get a pretty consistent grind and it doesn't really wobble

    in retrospect i think paying $50 more for a used baratza might have been better, but there's something nice about grinding your beans in the morning by hand even if it is a little time consuming. also i hate using up counter space so i guess it worked out for me.
     
    Last edited: May 30, 2012
  18. lefty

    lefty Senior member

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    So I buy myself a new coffee and need to experiment with grind size, water temperature, water purity, stirring time, extraction time, compensation for heat leakage and every possible multiple of each of those factors to somehow come up with a decent cup of coffee. How many tonnes of coffee do you go through before you dial that one bean in?

    I'm beginning to see why nespresso is so popular.

    lefty
     
  19. romafan

    romafan Senior member

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    I use an old crappy (Braun?) cheapo grinder, a Chemx & la Colombe Corsica beans - heat some milk while the coffee drips & you have a a pretty darn good good cup of coffee. Have a Francis/Francis-thing for espresso, but even though it's a simple dummy-proof capsule thing, I find it's a lot of effort, especially if you use the frother (can't make more coffee until the temp comes down, and it just takes too long).
     
  20. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    I think the process and anticipation has its own thrill. All part of it. Also, which is not discussed here really is your mood and company.
     

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